There are some who say that I got what was coming to me, and hell, some of those people are me. But back then I sure didn’t think so, nor did I have any real expectation that it would all work out for the best. There was a time or three I even contemplated filling out my discharge papers with a 9mm. But smarter people than me restricted my access to firearms so I’m still alive to tell you my tale. A story of hubris and honor, duty and desire, true love and epic hate and this is the way it all started…
Cometh the Hour Cometh the Woman.
By The Last Boy Scout
The man I was about to kill wore the face I was born with.
He wore it well, all things considered. It was handsome, clean cut, with a jaw chiseled enough to crack nuts on. When I wore it, it was all I could do to keep acne from popping up like rebellious provinces and a razor was still mostly wishful thinking and not an actual necessity. The years had been kind to once me, and a military regimen along with the completion of adolescence had created a man any girl could swoon over and not feel the least self conscious.
Myself? I had a gun pointed at his head.
“Tommy, I…” he started to say from his prone position.
“Tommy was the name of a boy l I once knew,” I interrupted, using my left hand to move aside a strand of long blond hair that would otherwise spoil my aim. “And Jessica the name of the girl I once loved. She betrayed me, stole my body, exiled me from my family and was otherwise a total bitch… pardon me, bastard.” I said forcing a smile. “I go by Katherine now.”
“I hated that name,” he said arguing with me, which rather goes to show that moving his soul to my superior brain hadn’t improved his smarts any.
“I know, that’s one of the reason’s I am rather fond of it,” I commented with as wicked a grin as I could manage after advanced training by several of my friends on the cheer squad.
“We can’t trade back.”
“I’m sorry,” he gasped out. “I’m just so … sorry.”
“You may make it up to me by standing up. My old mother will have to bury her son next week it would be a great shame if she also had to bury a coward.”
He looked at me for a good 20 seconds. At me, at the gun, back at me, back at the gun, at its safety switch and hammer, which were unlocked and ready. I could see him weigh the options, precious few that they were. Little cogs and wheels spinning around in that head I once knew so well. How far away was help? How far away were witnesses? Did the madwoman in front of him even care that there were witnesses? I saw it all go through his head in those 20 seconds. And he finally made his decision and helped remind me of the girl I once loved. All grit and moxie, and terrible beauty.
“No man calls me a coward,” he said as he used his uninjured hand to prop himself up and got to his feet.
“How fortunate for me then, that I am a woman.”
I fired the gun, my aim was true.
How the hell this all happened is quite a tale, so I suppose you want some back story.
It began, as most tragedies do, with testosterone. Late summer eight or so years back I was unloading from the shuttle the last of the possessions that would need to keep me hale and hearty for a year when I saw her. Being all of 14, and having advanced to what Americans unintentionally ironically referred to as “high” school I felt it was time I went about a man’s duty of finding myself a girlfriend.
She was, like me, by herself. Most of the other kids had parents or the more common beloved family retainers to help them move into boarding school. Myself, while the family had enough money to be merely comfortable we didn’t run to the extravagance of butlers and footmen. Mother had accepted a teaching position at the American University of Paris while my father was deployed. Big sisters #2,3 and 4 were already safely tucked away in their own form of higher education scattered across the continent. Big sister #1 was supposed to escort me on the train but having just reached her own post college independence she was in a hurry to get started on a family of her own and saw a likely prospect in the cute guy who asked her to dinner at Union Station and hardly needed any convincing that I would be fine on my own. This girl’s story I didn’t know but I was in a real hurry to find out. She was tall for 14, colt thin but not to the point where she had read too many fashion magazines and thought eating a bagel was a high crime. Her blond hair was tucked back into a practical ponytail that rested on her back shoulder blades. Her breasts were perhaps not as large as they could be, but I had taken enough junior. high health classes to know that she still had some growing left to do and hell, all you needed was a handful.
A few trips up the stairs generating what I hoped was a manly musk of sweat and I was done with my own gear in time to see that she had most of her own small mountain of provisions still left to move. I didn’t understand how the female form could require so much equipment. I’d find out all about that later but I promised you some back-story. I was wearing a rather risqué t-shirt bearing the legend “MARINES DO IT ON THE BEACH.” As a conversation starter it rather worked as she soon looked me in the eye and pointed at the globe and anchor on my chest.
“Aren’t you a little short for a storm trooper,” she said with the subtlest of smirks.
Straight lines like that don’t come along every day so I had to complete it.
“I’m Tom Ryan and I’m here to rescue you.” I bowed as gracefully as I could manage. “Or rather, all your worldly positions from temperamental New Hampshire summer, the forecast is for rain on and off all day long and four hands are better than two. That is of course, if you will accept aid and comfort from a future member of the American equivalent of Palpatine’s finest.”
She pondered it for a moment; I could see eyes running side to side weighing the pros and cons of letting some strange boy carry her bags. In the end, common sense if not my inherent charm got the better of her and she gracefully allowed me to help her up the stairs into her own room. Unfortunately up the stairs into her room was also across the campus and up three flights of stairs. And while she of course helped move her own stuff, somehow or another I made three trips for every one of her own.
“So how come you don’t have someone to help you move in like all the other pampered princesses?” I asked once it was all done, trying to be suave and mostly failing.
“You mean you’re not working for the school? Good, that means I don’t have to tip you.”
“At least tell me the name of my fair lady?”
“Eliza Doolittle.” She countered with a grin.
“You are gonna get made fun of a lot,” I said as somber as I could manage. “Among all these Amy’s and Brittney’s
“He he”, she giggled and it only made her seem cuter. “Jessica Scott, if you must know. And my evil stepmother wouldn’t pay the freight so to speak.”
“$40,000 in tuition and she won’t pay for Two Men and a Truck™ That sort of Yankee stinginess I don’t understand.”
“Cornhusker stinginess, I’m from Nebraska, which is more than can be said of her. God help me. And my tuition was one of the rather more set in stone codicils in my father’s will that she could not get around breaking. Incidentals like moving expenses however…were.”
“I’m sorry,” I said having the good manners to look away.
“No reason for you to be sorry, he’s been dead six years and I rather doubt you had anything to do with it, which is also, more than can be said of her. And what’s your story, scholarship student?”
“Some,” I granted her with a bow. “But only because any family here making less than 250k is considered low class. Also I think they were throwing in a bit extra cus of daddy’s stars.”
“Your father is a general?”
“A MAJOR general, and thankfully a very modern one as these things go. He’s being groomed for a third star and we, being in one of those brief moments where it is fashionable to be patriotic, he figured is what gave me a leg up on all the other kids that also had straight A averages. Now tell me about wicked stepmother, does she have a hairy wart? Or is she one of those classic evil beauties that wants to offer you a poisoned apple...”
Dad was a marine, and his father before him and so on until back around the time Chesty Puller hiself was still fighting in the banana Republics and I don’t mean a store at the mall. Mother’s people were democrats…we don’t speak of them much. I had spent most of my young life being dragged from West Germany to East Bengal and back again. If I stayed in one place longer than 18 months it was because dad was deployed to a hellhole where even my fearless mother would not subject us to dependant housing and we gravitated back to Jacksonville, Florida close to his sister which was sort of the closest thing to a home I had.
James “Little Jimmy” Ryan’s most recent post was General Commanding 1st Marine Division, “The Old Breed,” which was sort of his dream assignment and even if he kissed enough ass and ended up Commandant it was all downhill from here according to him. Trouble was, while 1st Marines were normally garrisoned in Pendleton we were involved in a couple odd shooting wars and pieces of the division were almost always deployed to either the sandbox or the ashcan and my father, being my father, and having of course to prove to himself that he was just as marine as boots 35 years younger than him decided to make a point by more or less commanding 90% of the time in country rather than sunny Southern California
My father can be a stubborn man but I wouldn’t call him stupid, though others might, since I planned to do more or less the same thing when my own time came. At 14 I was pretty much just marking time till the Naval Academy and my own military career. It wasn’t going to be a cake walk; Annapolis wasn’t West Point! But I figured as long as I didn’t get hit on the head and start leaking brain cells I had what it took to get in. Not for nothing but Phillips Exeter Academy was somewhat harder to get accepted into and I had already done that. Those that didn’t have the funding had the smarts and something about volunteering to get shot at for years at a time while undergoing a demeaning hell just for the privilege of doing so, sort of turned off the big brainpan types from applying. Not to mention the not inconsiderable physical requirements that the wheezing asthmatics that usually populated the upper echelons of academia wouldn’t be able to surmount.
It sounded nice to me, but then, I was my father’s son.
Jessica and I bonded that first day, and we bonded all the rest of that first year, or as much as a boy and girl as heavily chaperoned as we were could. By the time we met again for the start of second year it was generally accepted that we were an item, indeed well on our way to being the school’s golden couple. I wasn’t really looking for anything long term and I don’t think she was either but it just sort of happened. We clicked, two halves to the same heart and all the other clichés you can think of… we liked the same jokes, which when you think about my sense of humor, has to be a sign from the heavens that we were meant for each other.
It also took most of the drama out of high school. The never ending mating dance that is adolescent life just sort of passed us by. We were already with each other so didn’t have to expend the energy trying to find someone and I remembered her birthday, and Valentine’s day and since she was so cute and cuddly I figure one of her ancestors MUST have made a better than average deal with the devil, my eyes never had to stray. And on her part she understood me better than anyone including myself did. We even shared the same goals.
She had a beloved uncle that was a Marine during the recent unpleasantness we had in Southeast Asia. He had always protected her from the predications of wicked stepmother while he lived and by third year she was going to apply for Annapolis too. Half in honor of him, the rest to follow her man which sort of tickled me in places even she couldn’t. The green machine was always trying to present itself as kinder and gentler and non-discriminatory and what with the advantage of being female I figure she had a better chance than me.
I don’t care what they teach you in man school, it HELPS having a smart girlfriend. When we studied together, we actually STUDIED together and whenever I got worried that she might overtake me I had enough machismo to kick it into gear and try to win back my inherent male superiority. I figured 40 years from now we would both retire as 4-stars. I would let her be the first female Commandant while I was Chairman of the Joint Chiefs… you gotta have goals. We were at the tail end of the winter of our Senior year safely ensconced in the class of 1945 library and trying to find a piece of it that was actually heated when she decided it was time to have sex.
“Huh,” was my immediate reply, you could tell I was real sophisticated and experienced at this sort of thing.
“I’m still a virgin Tommy,” said Jessica as she gave me a not insignificant kiss on the lips. “And since I keep better track of your penis than you do I’m fairly certain that you are too.”
“Well yeah, and it’s a medical condition I hope to cure soon too.”
“Good, I’m glad we agree, take off your clothes,” she said, and she made to do the same.
“Jess! This is the library!” I shouted load enough to gain the attention of the sole librarian on duty downstairs who followed it with the perfunctory shhhhssshhhh.
“It is 7pm on a Saturday. Mrs. Springer gets up at 8PM to check the stacks for people writing in the books and then goes back to reading her magazines. It is also the baseball section of the collection which is hardly likely to be accessed by students at THIS school…care to try for a homerun.”
“I am assured there is ample precedent,” she said neatly, as she inspected her fingernails haughtily.
“I’m sure there is, it’s just, this isn’t the time or place I pictured in my head.”
“Tom, the bookshelves aren’t exactly setting my heart all pitter patter I agree, but we are running out of time.”
“What are you talking about Jess there is plenty of time, were only just shy of 18 I’m not even sure its legal yet.” I whined reluctantly.
“The age of consent in New Hampshire is 16, I looked it up. And according to girls locker room gossip that 2 years later than most, 4 years in one case but she’s a slut and not exactly a role model I’m eager to embrace.”
“You looked it up?” I asked disbelievingly.
“We are in the library,” she answered primly.
“Where do you even look something like that up?”
“Not the point Tommy! Focus!” she yelled slapping me upside the head.
“ssssssshhhhhhhhhh,” came from downstairs.
“Look Tom,” she said finishing removing her blazer and displaying two prominent body parts I’d grown rather fond of. “In two months we graduate and matriculate to the academy. But before that we have a plebe summer, SEPARATE boot camp as you well know. And then the academy proper which is the closest thing to a modern cloistered nunnery that America produces. They are so worried about rape, or harassment or any sort of sexual misconduct that they have it locked down so hard SEAL Team Six couldn’t get in and out unseen and I’d bet good money several of them have tried when they were younger. It’s not just against regulations, it would be a CRIME for us to have sex while were both at the academy and the few breaks we get may not give us an opportunity either between midshipmen cruises and other assignments. I’ve been thinking about flight school you know. “
“I know, and I hope you get it too.” I answered her encouragingly.
“I am not going to be an on the shelf old maid well into my 20’s. If we’re both going to be abstaining while every other college coed is at it like bunny rabbits I’m gonna need a little something something to tide me over…why are you still wearing pants?”
“Um, do you have, um, you know…protection?” I stammered out as I began undressing.
“I’ve been on the pill for years it helps regulate my period, and since neither of us has been active we don’t have to worry about disease so there is no need for the condom in your wallet that has probably been worn away to uselessness anyway.”
“Less than useless,” I agreed nodding my head while I kept eye contact with her chest, “since I left my wallet in my room.”
“Oh? And how were you planning on buying me dinner afterwards?”
“I’ll think of something,” I reassured her as I moved in to lay a kiss. “You’re hot… I mean, I know you’re hot, hot. God I know that! But I mean temperature wise, are you feeling ok we can…”
“It’s just a little fever,” She answered my irritated. “And if I was going to spread it to you, you’ve already got it, as much kissing as we do, so you might as well get some fun out of it… I think it would be better if you were the one to undo my bra.”
Never let it be said I defied the will of my lady. I was soon to be an officer and by act of congress a gentlemen so I better start getting practice. My fingers gently stroked their way up her back and moved to the clasp of her white satin bra. It was one of those fancy French jobs people like me usually only hear about. She must have been planning this a while since I knew, generally speaking she was more likely to wear something practical and comfortable like Hanes-For-Her. She had also had the foresight to pack a small blanket in her book bag and as soon as her breasts were unbound she laid down upon it.
Not wanting to make her feel subconscious I quickly took off my own shirt and doubled down by removing my shoes and pants and underwear. I still had my socks on though it was a stone built library in March certain things are just not done! Jess was shivering herself, despite the warmth of her skin. I resolved to do my duty to heat her up as soon as possible. Her skirt and hose were simple enough to remove and I was rather shocked to discover she wasn’t wearing panties, but by that point I guess I shouldn’t have been.
It was the first time I had ever laid eyes on the holiest of holies. I had seen pictures of course. I had the internet, and the filters at PEA weren’t as good as they thought they were. But something about flesh and blood, and the smell of it, added something to the experience that photons could never produce. I must admit I was sort of frozen in awe of it for long enough for Jess to deliver another motivational slap upside the head. I quickly took the hint and went about the business at hand.
I sort of cheated a little bit. Having older sisters, four older sisters mind you! Much of the time who didn’t have any other English speaking girls to talk to about sex with. I overheard many late night girl talk sessions that my mother would much rather I hadn’t. So at a reasonably young age I had heard about some of the traps and wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am pitfalls that had befallen my less fortunate brethren. If men had more older-sisters, womankind would be much happier. I started with my fingers exploring by touch my designated target. I HEARD about the magic button but never actually seen one and the lighting in the stacks was not exactly conducive to exploration. I found it soon enough and judging by the moan Jess was not entirely able to stifle, she agreed with me.
Once I was safe enough in my knowledge I moved in with my mouth. While my hands were busy upstairs I worked my tongue on the lower levels. Legend tells me it’s supposed to taste like fish but to my hormone ravaged mind it just tasted like…awesome. Jess was smart enough that she grabbed a Ty Cobb biography from the rack and shoved it spine first into her own mouth to bite down on. If she hadn’t I think Mrs. Springer would have come up to investigate the screams, magazine or not.
When I got the clear impression that Jess had at least one orgasm I started to think about my own needs. Little Tommy was not so little at the moment and at first I was rather worried that it wouldn’t fit. Nature I guess finds a way though, and while there was resistance at first, it was of the most pleasurable sort and a little more force carried the day and I was inside her. Jess left a few teeth marks in Mr. Cobb when I did; I think I will have to find a way to pay for that book when this is all over. Once inside I felt another barrier and another few up and down thrusts and I was through that one too. I didn’t need any proof that Jess was a virgin and we had given a precious gift to each other, but I had it now, and it was sort of nice.
The Marines had landed, and had the situation well in hand.
I gotta say, I wish I had lasted longer than I did, I had heard all sorts of bad stories about ‘pufft and gone’. Thinking about baseball wasn’t helping any. And since it would be forever linked with my first time and the love of my life, the most beautiful woman on Earth I don’t think it ever would. Three or so minutes in I felt a buildup much more powerful than when I had tried this by myself and I spent myself inside her. I manfully gave it a few more gyrations but I just didn’t have it in me and pulled out and collapsed on the carpet next to her.
I was gasping for breath just sort of looking off at the ceiling with a glaze over my eyes when Jess leaned over and kissed me on the cheek.
“Thank you,” was all she said.
“No need to thank me my dear, it was my pleasure.” I replied trying to be clever.
She made me pay for that later.
I did get her fever, a not so miner case of the crud came with it that we enjoyed together as a couple . Synchronized sniffing, hacking and coughing up phlegm will do wonders for a relationship; I recommend it to all my friends. We found three more occasions before spring finals to practice our new pastime, one of them was even in a proper bed. One week to the end of term and the last little bit of so called freedom before my military life and Jess came in to my common room to see me leaning back and just sort of taking it easy. She was looking a little harried but I didn’t pay it any great mind as most of us did at that point in the year. I would have too yesterday, but I had finished the last of my papers and projects and could just sort of coast for the rest of the year.
“Love of my life,” I said trying to cheer her up. “What say I take you out to dinner tonight? We can get 4 hour pass no problem and a bit of bad pizza and worse salad is just the sort of thing to turn that frown upside down, whatdayasay?”
“I do want to head to town,” Jess offered with a slight smile. “But right away. I got us both a day pass. Ms Priss was feeling magnanimous she got my test already graded and it was a 98.”
“Congratulations, but what are we going to do all day?”
“I… I need to see a doctor, I don’t have an appointment so I could be waiting a while and I need someone with a car in case it’s after the shuttle turns off.”
“Of course, but, cant student health fix you up.”
“It’s,” she hesitated looking down. “I was there this morning, student health are the ones referring me to town.”
“It’s not serious is it Jess? What did they say when they looked at you?” I asked concerned and all thoughts of easy coasting run clear out of my head.
“It’s not terminal if that’s what you mean, and probably nothing at all, at least I hope so. But I want to get it all checked out before plebe summer; I don’t want to get dinged for a medical before I even take the oath.”
“I’ll get the car and meet you by your rooms, ten minutes?”
“I’ll be ready in twenty,” she replied as she gave me a warm kiss.
The doctor’s office was small town New England standard. The waiting room had probably remained functionally the same since President Adams times, probably the first, but definitely the second. And while I had brought my own books to read and didn’t have to suffer through periodicals that had been outdated in my parent’s time I couldn’t help but worry that the doctor inside was using leaches and bloodletting to treat Jessica. My opinion my not significantly improved when several hours after arriving Jess was finally let out quite visibly shaken. I was up in a flash and had my arms around her offering what comfort I could.
“What’s wrong baby, what did they say? How serious is it?”
“Not too serious really, and only temporary it shouldn’t effect anything.” She said shaking her head. “Let’s do that Pizza you mentioned and we’ll talk about it...ok?”
“Ok,” I answered trying to be strong.
Any point in Exeter was no more than five minutes from any other point in Exeter so we were shortly sitting down and eating at the Supreme House of Pizza and Seafood before I had really wrapped my head around something was wrong. A few years in this town had gotten me used to the idea of two things that shouldn’t really go together somehow did. It was kind of like an allegory for Jessica and me. The princess and the pseudo pauper, the debutant and the jarhead, when we first tried it we christened it “our place” on the spot… The pizza still sucked but then all pizza did, north of Long Island.
“Now what’s all going on?” I asked trying to keep the worry out of my voice and mostly failing.
“I need a ride to the next doctor It’s probably too late to do it today? Can you get out early again tomorrow?”
“Yea, I’m all gravy in all the classes the only thing I have to be there for is bed check.”
“Let’s hope it doesn’t last that long,” she answered resigned.
“Where is the appointment?”
“Massachusetts,” Jess replied succinctly as she took a sip from her ice water, which was a warning sign all by itself since she was a non-recovering Coke™ fiend.
“Where in Massachusetts?” I asked confused.
“Anywhere in Massachusetts, I’ll look up viable candidates tonight when we get back.”
“What’s so special about Massachusetts Jess, I know sometimes New Hampshire doesn’t come off as a civilized state but they probably have one or two competent doctors somewhere, if not necessarily Exeter we could try Manchester or Hanover-”
“I also need $500,” she interrupted me tersely. “My birthday is still nine days away and I won’t have my inheritance until then and my usual allowance is tapped.”
“Well won’t your health insurance cover it? I mean,” I asked confused scratching my head. “I’ll give you the money of course, but I thought the school made us all prove insurance. Did you let it lapse and not re-up the week before plebe summer?”
“This…won’t be covered by insurance.” She said ashen faced.
“What the hell is going on Jess?!” I shouted finally fed up with all the running around.
“I’m pregnant,” she replied very quietly. “And I wish to obtain an abortion.”
I don’t think I helped improve the situation by fainting.
END PART ONE
Well, here I am again after many months away. Some of you have missed me, and some of you wish I had stayed away! I saw the post for the reconciliation contest and it sort of congealed into a story in my head and I ran with it… all day, and then the next day. And then I continued it at work when no one else was looking, and HEY! Don’t look at me like that I wasn’t shirking I just work in a government office and I do what took the old guy eight hours a day in only four. But back to the point I was trying to make, this story sort of chain reactioned into a full on novel. I’m looking at the word count now and it’s at 72,229 according to the fine people at Microsoft.
Now I know what you are thinking, Scout has started other stories before and not finished them. Much to your consternation and my own secret shame. THIS one though is different. I have been averaging about 4500 words a day and going strong for longer than I have ever done before and unlike the other stories this time I have a deadline. If I want to claim that awesome prize it has to be all finished by October 20th and I do tend to work better when there are actual goals to finish. If worse comes to worse and my muse decides to go roost on someone else’s shoulder than I have at least finished the first third of my outline and a good stopping point at the first reconciliation. I say first because, well, these two are in for some interesting times...
The plan is to post every few days the story in 5,000 word blocks. Which means I have a healthy reserve before I am out of fresh material. And the good lord willing, and the river don’t rise (and you will understand that reference later!) It should be actually COMPLETED.
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