Sloane Patterson, Stacy Patterson and Steve Patterson stood in front of the headstone. Sloane was crying and bought a handkerchief to her face to dry her eyes, as did Stacy.
Steve Patterson had never met the woman buried in the grave and his eyes remained dry.
“I never knew her but I know I owe her so much,” Stacy sobbed.
Sloane pulled her daughter to her and hugged her and the three of them stood staring at the headstone on the bitterly cold winter’s day.
Randy Carter stood in a grove of oaks watching the family from a distance. The hypocrisy; especially coming from Sloane was not lost on him. He cursed Sloane and Steve Patterson bitterly and walked away towards his car.
Sloane, Stacy, and Steve turned their backs on the headstone and left it to the snowdrift that was building up against it. The dates of the birth and death of the interred were already obscured by snow but the rest of the engraving on the gravestone remained visible in the weak light.
‘Amanda Grayson. Beloved Mother of Sloane and Grandmother of Stacy ~ Forever Loved and Dearly Missed’
Sarah regained consciousness in a private ward in LA County General Hospital. Her chest hurt like hell and a nurse leaned over her and smiled.
“Can I make you more comfortable?” she asked and Sarah nodded.
A doctor arrived soon after and explained to her that he had extracted bullet fragments from her right lung but she would likely make a full recovery and that she would only have a small scar. Like that was important.
Sarah saw the edge of a blue uniform that she presumed correctly was a cop stationed at her door.
She drifted back to sleep and awoke the next day feeling a little better. The nurse let the cop come in to interview her.
The cop looked at her quizzically. He’d obviously been told she was transgendered but he couldn’t see the difference between her and any other attractive middle-aged woman.
“Ahem,” he cleared his throat.
“Ma’am. I have a sworn statement made by one Randolph Carter that you and he were in the Dodger Stadium parking lot and a man of indeterminate race, build, and looks tried to snatch your bag and when you resisted you received a gunshot wound. Is that your recollection of events Ma’am?”
The cop looked down at his notebook; obviously sceptical.
“Yes officer. That’s exactly how I remember it,” Sarah looked at him with a blank face.
“And you are unable to describe your assailant?”
Sarah shook her head.
“Ma’am. If you’re prepared to sign this bullshit statement I can close this case and be done with it; which suits me and would seem to suit some people in very high places,” the cop handed her a prepared statement on a clipboard which she signed.
“Only one thing,” Sarah croaked through a sore throat and parched lips.
The cop looked around expectantly.
“Don’t call him Randolph,” she giggled and winced with the pain of it.
The cop shook his head and walked out of the room.
Sarah spent four days in the hospital and received zero visitors and took as many calls. She offered to pay one of the nurses to get her some clothes. She couldn’t wear what she had been dressed in when she arrived at the hospital. The nurse refused payment but shopped for her and bought her leggings, skinny jeans, a couple of tops, sox, underwear, a fleecy hoodie and lined three-quarter coat. She also bought toiletries and makeup.
A number of times Sarah picked up her phone and punched up the number Randy had put in the phone but all she got was an operator telling her the number was no longer in service.
Someone had put close to seven hundred dollars in her purse when she was admitted and her medical bills were being paid for by an Insurance Company who refused to divulge who had taken out the policy. All they would say was that coverage was limited and ceased once she was discharged.
Sarah caught a taxi to the bus terminal and bought a ticket home. She was in no rush.
Randy Carter followed the Patterson’s to Austin where they had a small ranch.
They were outside having a cookout despite the cool weather when he crunched up the gravel path to their gazebo. Steve was tending to the barbecue and the women were sitting at a nearby table. They were all sipping beer.
“Well, well, well. Nice to see the whole family back together again,” Randy stepped up onto the gazebo and helped himself to a Lone Star.
“Randy!” Stacy squealed and ran in to his arms.
“How you doin’ sugar?” he kissed her cheek and she smiled at him.
“I’m getting better,” she said wistfully.
“Well enough to travel all that way to visit Amanda’s grave on her birthday,” he smiled bitterly.
“You get over there to Momma!” Steve waved his cooking tongs at Stacy.
“He’s right honey; go to your Momma,” Randy let her go.
“What are you doing here Carter? You’ve been paid. I even tossed in a bonus,” Steve was looking around, he had two security guards permanently stationed on his property since what happened to Stacy.
“Those good old boys of yours are sleeping Steve. They ain’t hurt,” Randy gave him a mirthless grin.
“What the fuck do you want! You’ve been paid!” Sloane hissed.
She showed no fear.
“Yes but you and your husband haven’t honoured the deal you made,” Randy sipped his beer.
“We paid you every cent and then some,” Sloane snapped at him.
“I’m not talking about the money. I’m talking about absolving the petition you filed in Federal court to have Sarah Carter’s birth certificate and adoption annulled,” he growled.
“Don’t you mention that thing in my house!” Sloane screeched.
“That thing don’t count for shit. She’s an abomination on this family!” Steve joined his wife and put a comforting arm around her shoulder.
“She saved your daughter’s life. Nearly at the expense of her own,” Randy said through gritted teeth.
“I don’t understand Momma? Is that the woman who got me out of that house?” Stacy looked bemused.
“She’s no woman darlin’. She ain’t nothing to you,” Sloane stroked her daughter’s hair.
“Her name is Sarah Carter and she’s your aunt. She loves you so much that she gave away everything she had to save you. I can’t tell you the details because it isn’t up to me, but that woman gave away her livelihood, her dignity, and her honour to find you,” Randy said.
“Except no one can take away that woman’s dignity and honour,” Randy looked down at the floor.
“Dignity! Honour! That thing has nothing. It’s not one thing or the other. You simpleton. You let it get under your skin. It might have made a fool out of your brother but I thought you were made of sterner stuff,” Steve snarled.
Randy took four quick steps in succession and he had Steve Patterson by the throat and lifted him nearly clear of the ground. Steve was choking; his face red and bulging, gasping for breath.
Sloane and Stacy beat against Randy’s bulging forearms and he let Steve drop to the ground gasping for breath.
“I’m sorry about this Stacy but your parents have left me no choice,” he said tenderly to Stacy who was on her knees tending to her stepfather.
“Sloane. If you and Steve don’t drop the petition against Sarah tomorrow I’m going to release the full story to the press. They will love it. Construction millionaire’s daughter held captive by porn king. Made to perform in online porn and prostitute herself.”
“Those shitheads at FOX and CBS will lap that shit up and then there’s the online media. Your driveway will be full of media wagons for weeks and every sixteen year old kid in Texas will Google away until he finds the footage of Stacy on some website,” Randy said viciously.
“You wouldn’t!” Sloane hissed.
“I wouldn’t hurt Stacy for all the gold in Fort Knox but if you don’t drop that petition I’ll bring us all down,” Randy leaned against a pole and sipped his beer.
Steve had got to his feet and recovered enough to speak.
“Ok! Ok! Ok! I’ll drop the petition. But I never want to hear from you or it ever again, you hear?” he puffed.
Randy took one step forward and Steve flinched.
“You call that woman it again in my hearing and I’ll beat you to a pulp.”
“Ok the deal’s done. But the threat stands and I’ll be watching. You ungrateful fucks do anything to hurt Sarah again and the deal is off and you better get an army to watch your backs,” Randy tossed the bottle in the dust and crunched down the pathway, the same way he had came.
“Randy! Randy! Tell me more about Sarah!” Stacy cried out and tried to follow him down the path but Sloane and Steve held her as tight as they could.
Sarah got off the bus and crossed the street to where one of the town’s three taxis sat on the rank. The driver kept looking at her in the rear view mirror.
“You’re the librarian lady aincha?” he sniffed.
Sarah just nodded.
He sniffed again and then rolled down the window and spat.
The taxi drove away trailing dust and she stood in the road and looked at her little cottage. It looked abandoned. The yard was full of tumbleweeds and the letterbox was overflowing with junk mail. All the blinds were closed.
Sarah grabbed her duffle and stepped onto the porch. She noticed the tag first. ‘Tranny Whore!’ had been spraypainted across the front wall, red spraypaint on fading white clapboards.
There were two official looking letters stuck in the screen door. She snatched them and lifted a flower pot with a dead geranium in it. Under it was her spare key.
She opened the door and let herself in. Dropping her duffle on the floor she turned on the water supply under the sink and ran the tap. She opened the blinds, the back door, and a couple of windows to let in some fresh air. She brewed coffee, poured a cup and wearily sat at the kitchen table.
Sarah sipped coffee and smoked and stared at the two letters in front of her. One was from the County Commissioner’s office and the other was from her realtor. She set her resolve and opened both letters. As she expected they pretty much said the same thing. She was fired from her job as the town librarian for being absent but also for applying for the job under false pretences and she was being evicted from her house for the same reasons.
“But I didn’t! I am a woman!” she whispered to the empty house.
She put her head on her hands and slept.
When she woke up it was dark and chilly. She turned on a lamp but left the windows and the door open. She was beyond feeling the cold.
She went to the kitchen and stood on tippytoes to open the door to a small cupboard high up in the kitchen cabinets. She pulled down a pint of Jack Daniel’s from its hidey-hole and put it on the table. She took a tumbler from the draining board and blew the dust out of it filled it with the golden liquid all the way to the brim.
She sat staring at it and smoked a cigarette down to the butt and then lit another.
She reached for the glass.
“That won’t solve anything,” the deep voice said.
“How long have you been watching me?” Sarah asked still staring at the glass.
“Long enough,” he replied.
“You did that last time you were here,” Sarah spun the glass around on the table.
“But last time you knew,” he said.
“You’re making a habit of it,” Sarah smiled wanly.
“Twice is not a habit. Can I sit?”
“It’s a free country,” she still stared at the glass.
A chair scraped on the wooden floor.
“I had to make sure you were safe. You were ok in the hospital, you had a cop outside your door. Even Raffe isn’t stupid enough to try anything with the cops around you.”
“I sent my gismo to LAPD Vice. They have everything on Xavier Productions. I’ve been following you, making sure that they didn’t come after you. They all scattered. Raffe is nowhere to be found and Lyle and Tina are rumoured to be in Mexico. Word on the street is that the Russians took care of Raffe.”
She remained silent, staring at the glass.
“Also I had to pay Sloane and Steve Patterson a visit while you were safe in hospital.”
Sarah’s ears picked up when she heard Sloane’s name.
“I had to make sure they lifted the petition they had filed against you,” Randy explained and reached out to take her hand.
She snatched it away.
“I didn’t think they would honour their word. It doesn’t matter anyway. They’ve poisoned me here,” she didn’t look up.
“Sarah! Who cares! This is a shitty town and you had a shitty job! You can do better,” Randy was getting heated.
Sarah sprang to her feet and shouted at him
“It was my shitty town! And my shitty job!”
“What do I do now? What do I do now?” she broke down and sobbed.
Randy took her in his arms and stroked her hair and held her close.
“You know what you do now?” he whispered in her ear.
She shook her head against him.
“You start a new life,” Randy cooed.
She looked him in the eyes; hers were still brimming with tears.
“How Randy? How do I start a new life?” tears ran down her cheeks.
“With me,” he whispered and gently wiped away her tears.
“You start a new life with me Sarah. I love you,” he whispered.
“You don’t love me! You despise me!”
“Listen…I converted everything I have into cash, including the payment for the last job. I’ve bought a little condo at the end of Waikiki, right under Diamond Head. I’m starting anew and I want you to come with me,” he grinned at her.
Sarah smiled back at him through teary eyes.
“Oh Randy I don’t want your pity. You might think you love me but it’s just a reaction to what we’ve been through. I’m still what I am and you’ll never get over that. But I am flattered,” Sarah disentangled herself from his embrace.
“So you don’t feel anything for me?” Randy searched her eyes.
Sarah looked away and shook her head.
Randy walked away. The screen door slammed behind him as he left and Sarah gave out one huge sob and sat back down. She lit a cigarette and spun the tumbler of golden liquor around and around.
Then she picked it up and threw it across the room where it shattered against the wall.
The screen door slammed shut again and Sarah turned around to find Randy standing over her.
He pulled her from the chair and clutched her to him.
“I’m not giving up that easy. I love you. I love everything about you,” he pulled her face to his and pressed his lips against hers.
They were as soft and as pliant as he’d dreamt they would be.
He kissed her. Softly at first and then he felt a little response and her lips parted just a little. Randy kissed her harder and she pressed back against him. She wrapped her arms around him and their bodies pressed together as their lips crushed each others. Randy slipped the tip of tongue inside Sarah’s mouth and the tip of hers found his.
They kissed tenderly, their passion building. Finally they had to break the kiss to breathe.
Randy smiled down into her pretty face and stroked the bangs out of her eyes.
“I think I loved you even when I tried to convince myself that I hated you,” he looked seriously and deeply into her eyes.
“I’m still not convinced I love you. You better kiss me again just so I can be sure,” she grinned and teased him.
He spanked her playfully on the buttock and then kissed her hard with a lot of tongue. Sarah broke the kiss.
“Ok you’ve convinced me. I love you,” she grinned up at him.
Then she looked at him very seriously.
“I do you love you Randy. I was just afraid to,” she started to cry again and Randy kissed away her tears.
They held each other and kissed and cuddled for quite a while and then Randy sat down on the kitchen chair and Sarah sat in his lap with her arms around his neck. She kissed him and stroked his face and then she grinned.
“Are we really going to live in Hawaii?”
“Yep,” Randy grinned back at her.
She looked at him very seriously and Randy became worried.
“Can we take the Mustang with us? We have to keep the Mustang,” she grinned and Randy burst out laughing.
Sarah came out of the small waves, her lithe body tanned, her legs long and her small breasts taut. Her hair was bleached by the sun. She wore a shocking pink bikini that set off her dark flesh; the little pink triangles just covering her breasts and her groin. She had gaffing down to an art but she didn’t care really, the tiny bit of beachfront was theirs. It came with the condo.
Randy sat slowly swinging on the porch and watched his lover making her way through the sand. She never failed to make his heart skip whenever he saw her. He saw the smile on her face and his heart warmed. If ever a woman deserved happiness, Sarah did.
She beamed at him as she sidled through the little wooden gate in the picket fence and picked her way through the little dunes and grassy knolls that comprised their little back yard.
Sarah gripped the ropes of the swing and smiled down at Randy.
“Good morning sleepyhead. You didn’t join me for our morning swim.”
“I can sit here all day in this swing and watch you, lover,” he smiled back.
“Yeah I can see that,” she chuckled.
Randy was wearing nothing but a pair of Speedos and the front of them was bulging considerably.
Sarah took hold of Randy’s penis like it was gearstick and slowly squeezed it.
“I can definitely see that!” she giggled.
Sarah climbed on the swing so she was straddling Randy and held on by placing her arms around his neck.
“And I can feel it too,” she giggled.
Randy’s erection was pushing into the crevice of her behind.
Sarah had taught Randy how to make love to her. He was a proficient and enthusiastic learner. They sometimes spent hours just teasing each other with long foreplay sessions until they were so desirous of each other that they melted together.
But this morning was going to be just plain lust…and that was ok too.
Sarah kissed Randy passionately, driving her tongue into his mouth and he reciprocated. She placed her feet on the ground and eased Randy’s tumescent penis out of his Speedos and untied the string on her bikini bottom and ripped off her gaff. Her own cock sprang forward and pressed against Randy's hard belly.
Randy reached behind her and untied her bikini top, freeing her pert breasts. He lowered his face to her nipples and kissed and suckled them.
Sarah threw back her head and lifted up on tippytoes. She had anticipated a morning lovemaking session and she was lubricated.
She lowered her buttocks and lifted her feet clear of the ground impaling herself and on Randy’s erection, now buried as deep as it could go inside her tight anus.
They swung backwards and forwards on the swing while Sarah gently rocked up and down; their arms locked around each other, kissing and caressing each other. Sarah’s erection rubbed on Randy’s lightly oiled belly and leaked pre-seminal fluid. She moaned as she felt his cock throb inside her, pressing on her prostate.
Randy cupped her buttocks, trying to fuck her. Sarah helped him. She stopped swinging and put her feet on the ground so that Randy could thrust in and out of her. His thrusts became insistent; harder and faster, almost frantic. She kissed him hard and pressed her breasts against him as she orgasmed. Her cock quivered and her hot seed splashed on Randy’s tight, warm, flesh.
Randy held Sarah by the hips and drove himself deep inside her and ejaculated.
They sat slowly swinging on the porch as they slowly came down from the high of their orgasm.
An older couple walked past their fence hand in hand and glanced their way. They both grinned mischievously and Randy waved at them.
“Who are you waving at?” Sarah smiled and put her head on his shoulder.
“Us, when we get older,” he smirked.
“Come on lazy. Pull on your Speedos and I’ll put my bikini back on and we can clean up in the surf and then get breakfast,” she nuzzled his shoulder.
It was sort of a good idea. They played in the surf and then the play became foreplay and it ended up with Sarah’s legs wrapped around Randy’s waist as she held on to him and kissed him while they made love in the surf.
They took breakfast on their little porch. The tide had come up and they watched the surfers working the shore break.
They watched a young woman, her blonde hair blowing in the breeze behind her, making her way through the sand coming their way. They both sipped coffee and wished they had a cigarette but they had made a pact to quit three months ago and neither had cheated.
As the young woman got closer they could see she was carrying a backpack; struggling against the fine sand and the blustery wind. There appeared to be something familiar about her.
Randy and Sarah both stood and the woman broke into a run, dropping her backpack. Sarah raced to the gate and opened her arms and Stacy fell into them.
“Oh my god! Aunt Sarah I found you!” she squealed.
They hugged each other and kissed and hugged again.
Randy stood on the porch and tears of happiness ran down his face.
Later they sat at the table, Randy and Stacy sipping beers and Sarah a diet Coke. Stacy had changed into a swimsuit and Sarah was glad to see she had a little more weight on her, she and Randy were still in their swimsuits too.
“How on earth did you find me?” Sarah asked.
Stacy looked guiltily at Randy and he smiled at Sarah and shrugged his shoulders innocently.
Sarah kicked him under the table.
“Hey we wanted it to be surprise,” Randy grinned.
“Ok but…what does your mother and father think of you coming to Hawaii to see your tranny Aunty?” Sarah asked.
“Hey! Hey!” Randy and Stacy yelled in unison.
Randy took Sarah’s wrists in his hands and kissed her palms and looked at her with all seriousness.
“You stopped talking about yourself like that a long time ago Sarah. Don’t you dare start again now!” he admonished her.
Sarah nodded and Stacy leaned forward and hugged her.
“You saved my life. I love you Aunt Sarah,” she smiled and Sarah smiled back.
Stacy noticed the scar on Sarah’s chest, just below her right breast. She reached out and traced it with her finger.
“That’s where…” she trailed off.
“Yeah that’s where Raffe Ignesman shot me,” Sarah said matter of factly.
“I don’t try to pretend it never happened. It’s a bad part of my life that’s in the past. I look at this way. If that hadn’t happened I might never had fallen in love with lunkhead over there and he with me,” she teased.
“Hey!” Randy pretended to look hurt.
“But yeah. Every time I see that scar, I feel a little guilty,” he said seriously.
“I use it to get my way whenever I want,” Sarah laughed.
“Come on! Let’s go for a swim and then lunkhead can take us for lunch at Shorebirds,” Sarah got up from her seat and ran down the path towards the surf.
“She’s wonderful Randy,” Stacy said.
“Yes she is,” Randy looked longingly after Sarah and then they both ran down the path after her.
Randy and Sarah sat at a table for two at La Mer Restaurant on Waikiki beach watching the flames from the torches on the beachfront. Randy sipped Chablis and Sarah sparkling water. They held hands across the table like young lovers.
Randy removed a hand and put it in the pocket of linen jacket and pulled out a little black box.
Sarah’s heart thundered in her chest.
Randy flipped open the box to reveal a perfect blue-white diamond set in white gold.
“An ice diamond for my Ice Princess” he whispered.
He took the ring from the blue satin insert and held it out and looked at Sarah questioningly.
She nodded, tears running down her face, and extended her left hand.
Randy slid the ring onto her ring finger and leaned over the table and kissed her.
“Look on the bright side,” he grinned mischievously.
“When we get married you won’t even have to change your last name.”
“Oh, fuck off Randolph,” she laughed.
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