The seduction: part 12

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Chapter thirty four: another round of music.

To neither Stephanie’s nor Maureen’s surprise they found both, John and Aileen, waiting when they got back. Of course they wanted to know how it had gone and both Maureen and Steph were full of praise for the hair stylist and the resulting transformation of Sinead into a teenage version of Stephanie. They really looked like being sisters about a decade apart in birth. Their hosts, of course, were delighted. Then Stephanie mentioned Dónal’s comment about owing people another concert.

“You don’t have to feel obliged, Stephanie.” John said immediately “Not that I would not like to hear your lovely voice again, but I thought you two were on holiday.”
“Well,” Maureen replied with a bit of a sigh “it seems life had other plans for us.”
“I hope,” Aileen intervened “You still enjoy your time with us?”
“It is not, that I don’t, sorry. I just would like some time alone with my love.”
“In that case we will just give you some space, Maureen. Let’s just say the place is busy for a couple of days. When you had a bit of time by yourselves and are ready, just tell us. We’ll keep people off your backs.”
“Well,” Stephanie made herself heard now “I think one more night of music and then we’ll leave Sinead and Roisin to granny Maureen and their father for some days. We have to go back to Exeter after all. They better get used to getting on without us.”

“And as to time by ourselves, my love,” she added for Maureen “I know that bay is waiting for us to visit. I want to go as much as you do. Another day is not going to make that go away, is it?”
Stephanie’s cute smile made Maureen’s heart melt. How she missed having her all for herself. Aileen could definitely see the longing in the look she gave Steph and the look of pain in Steph’s, as she was torn between Maureen and what she felt her obligation to be towards Dónal, Sinead and Roisin.
“Stephanie,” Aileen said “the world’s problems are not going to go away if you ignore your and your love’s needs, they are going to get worse, because you’ll loose your energy needlessly.”
“She’s right, you know.” John said “It is rather like farming, you sow a seed and then you tend it and afterwards you have to wait for things to develop by themselves, unless there is a reason to intervene. You’ve done more already than anybody else would have. Give yourself some space, Stephanie. There are enough of us here to help.”
“OK.” Steph conceded “Tomorrow and then it is time just for us, my love. Happy?”
As an answer Maureen grabbed and kissed her.
“Off to bed with you two then.” Aileen said with a smile “see you at breakfast.”

The next morning, after one of the most intensive nights of making love, Maureen and Stephanie were nevertheless refreshed and relaxed. Maureen because she knew they’d soon have more of time just the two of them and Stephanie because making love to Maureen always seemed to recharge her energy, no matter what they were doing and how long. She had been singing to her love again, softly, almost in a whisper, but Maureen had been in heaven and Steph as well. And the climaxes had been soft and long and the union complete. Neither could remember ever having experienced anything like them. Both were now wondering, what would happen on the beach in that cove. They cuddled for a good while, before getting up, showering and getting dressed. It was a quarter past nine before they showed up in the kitchen. Both kids gave them enthusiastic hugs and then settled to keep them company during breakfast. Again they had decided to help Aileen with her household chores after breakfast.

“Are Sinead and Roisin coming over later?” Ryan asked.
“Yes, sweetie, they are.” Stephanie told him “We want to make plans for tonight for another concert, a happy one, this time. Their daddy is coming, too.”
“What does Sinead look like now, Stephanie?” Niamh asked.
“Like my teenage sister.” Stephanie said with a smile “She had her hair done a bit like mine.”
“I bet she is very pretty.” Niamh said.
“Yeah,” Ryan said “I think so, too. Just as well that we’re helping again today. That way mum can relax and play music with you without worry.”
“Oh you are sooooo sweet you two!” Steph all but squealed getting up and picking the two up for another hug. The kids giggled as usual and this time Aileen joined the group hug.
“Thank you, you two,” Aileen said close to tears “I love you so much.”

Maureen and Steph settled down for their cooked breakfast and had just about finished, when Dónal and his two girls arrived. All the adult were surprised at the ease, with which Ryan and Niamh accepted Sinead. Ryan was the first to greet her.
“Oh wow, Sinead,” He said in greeting “You look beautiful. Actually you look like Stephanie’s younger sister.”
“I love your hair!” Niamh chimed in “Are you more happy now?”
Sinead for a moment did not know how to react. Then she remembered that they were a lot younger and now, as an older girl, she got on her knees and hugged the two of them close to tears.
“Jeeze, you are sweet, you two. No wonder Stephanie likes you so much.”
Aileen was grinning from ear to ear.
“Well, Sinead, if your reaction did not prove you are all girl, I don’t know what would.” she said.
Dónal came and wanted to shake Aileen’s hand in a bit of an awkward movement, but Aileen just kissed him on both cheeks instead.
“Dónal, if you need any help, advice, a shoulder to cry on … anything, John and I will be there for you. Maureen and Stephanie have got lives to go back to, but we will always be here, just as Maureen O’Connor. And our two angels, of course, will only be in Devon, not the end of the world.”

That was much more than Dónal had expected, He had to swallow hard to be able to give an audible reply.
“Thank you, Aileen. Stephanie said you and John would help, if there were problems at school. I must admit, that I feel a bit overwhelmed at the moment.”
“John will be free a little later, Dónal. I think it might help you to talk to him for a bit.”
“Yes,” Stephanie added “he is such a lovely man too, Dónal. I am sure you’ll get along with each other really well.”
“Would you like a coffee?” Aileen asked.
“I am more of a tea person,” Dónal said with a trace of shyness, that reminded Steph of Sinead “would you mind?”
“Not at all!” Aileen replied “We always have both anyway, this being a B&B after all.”
Dónal visibly relaxed.
“I hope it was not too much trouble with my two?”
“Trouble?” Aileen asked “How could two nice kids like yours be any trouble? Kids do cry, when they are sad. If adults cannot cope with that they are the trouble, not the kids.”
Stephanie actually giggled at that.

They settled around the breakfast table again and Aileen asked Sinead and Roisin if they already had thought about any music they would like to play. Both had not.
“What about “All around my hat?” Maureen asked.
“Oh, sweet!” Stephanie cooed “We could follow that up with “Safety dance”
“Yes! That is nice. And then we do “King of the fairies” as an instrumental” Aileen added.
“Oooh good, and we follow that up with their “Warm sweet breath of Love!” from the “Book of invasions” album Stephanie added.
“I have never heard of those two, who are they by?” Maureen asked.
“You would probably have to ask you gran about those.” Aileen laughed “The Horslips are more from her youth. They are brilliant, though. I have the album for Sinead and Roisin to listen to it. You are welcome too, of course, Maureen.”
“I’d like to hear you sing “The Skye Boat Song” Stephanie, please?” Dónal said.
“Yes and add “Fields of Gold” Stephanie said “that already is quite a nice mix.”
“Let’s ask Brigit and Patrick for some input, too. But then I think “Greensleves” should be included in any case.” Aileen said.
“Definitely!” Roisin confirmed “but I would like to also play “Hills of Ireland”
“You can play that?” Maureen asked aghast.
“Oh yes, she can!” Sinead giggled “she’s been practising that since she was seven. It was difficult to bear in the beginning.”
“OK, here’s one last thing that none of you may know.” Stephanie said “It is a German group called Faun, I’ll show you on my phone. It’s beautiful!”

Once they had seen the video everyone had to agree, that it was very beautiful and perfectly suited the bhodran, Violin, harp, flute and Steph’s voice. Since it was Steph, who had discovered the song on youtube, she knew the words inside out and the others agreed, that even if they didn’t know it well all of them would most probably be able to improvise it.
“Scarborough fair” Sinead finally got up the courage to say.
She had been quiet, possibly a bit intimidated by all the exotic stuff Stephanie had come up with. Stephanie gathered her in her arms and said she was sorry to have sprung so much unknown stuff on them.
“It is not so difficult for me.” Sinead said “To lay a good base with the bhodran comes naturally to me. But for Roisin, Brigit and Patrick?”
“You are perfectly right, Sinead.” Stephanie admitted “I might have gotten carried away with some of it.”
“OK, we also got the different generations here, too. It is such a beautiful experience in any case.” Aileen said “But Sinead, Scarborough fair is definitely going to be included. What about you and Roisin showing us what you both like to play? Lets go over and rehearse a bit?”

They all thought that to be a good idea. Dónal got the instruments from their car, Aileen set up her harp and while Maureen rang her gran to tell her what was going on, Stephanie started to sing along to whatever Roisin and Sinead were playing. Dónal was crying happy tears already after the first piece.
“Stephanie, you really sing like an angel.” he said with difficulty “Your voice is so beautiful!”
Stephanie gently touched his cheek.
“Thank you, Dónal, you have two wonderful kids who play very beautifully, too. I wonder where they got the talent from?”
“I don’t have any musical talent, and neither did my wife, as far as I know.” Dónal replied.
“I can hardly believe that.” Maureen joined the conversation “Both your kids are so highly talented, such things do not appear out of nowhere.”
“That is true, mostly.” Stephanie said, but sometimes genes jump a generation or two, is that not so, my love? What do you remember of your grandparents, Dónal?”
“Well, my grandmother was a music teacher.”Dónal mused “Otherwise I do not remember any other.”
“Have you ever tried to sing or play an instrument yourself?” Steph asked softly.

“No.” Dónal admitted somewhat sadly “The opportunity never seemed to present itself.”
“Is that why you encouraged your kids?” Steph’s voice was almost a whisper.
“We both did.” he admitted.
“May be it is time you tried yourself. It is never too late. I only started to sing a little while ago. You never know. Sinead and Roisin would be so happy to share music with you. If you want to try, just ask them. They’ll never laugh, I promise. And if it doesn’t work, nobody is ever going to hear about it. But can you even imagine the bliss, if it worked?”
“You really are an angel!” Dónal said and hugged her under tears “I will try. It would give us so much to share music. You are right. Will you listen if we try?”
“Not a good idea the first time, Dónal. If it works? Yes. I will listen the second time.”


The songs for the concert in the order of appearance
1) All around my hat: (
2) safety dance: (
3) King of the fairies: (
4) Warm sweet breath of Love! (Horslips from the album «Book of invasions»)
5) The Skye Boat Song: (
6) Fields of Gold: (
7) Greensleeves: (
8) Hills of Ireland: (
9) Federkleid: (
10) Scarborough fair: (

Chapter thirty five: complications and another concert.

The next couple of hours were quickly gone setting up again for another concert. John had become free but wasn’t really needed, so he and Dónal had a long and friendly talk, much to Steph’s and Maureen’s satisfaction. Sinead and Roisin were busy chatting and getting acquainted with Aileen, Colleen, Brigit and Patrick. Maureen O’Connor had arrived, too and the place had started to fill in the reception area, when Stephanie heard a raised voice, that instantly raised her hackles. She left the common room and saw her love and Maureen the elder standing speechless in front of a woman, who only could be Maureen’s mother and a man, whose head was read enough to look ready to explode. He had his hand raised as if to hit Maureen. Apart from his irate voice the room was eerily silent.

“… and now you’ve come here to spread your perversion to the local children!”
That was enough to send Stephanie flying into combat for her love’s rescue, as everybody else seemed paralysed. She was between the man and Maureen in a flash and the slap she gave his face sounded like a gunshot in the silence. She actually slapped him hard enough for his head to snap sideways. Her voice was full of contempt.
“Coming from a bigot, who claims to believe in a god who is supposed to love all of his creation, that is the most absurd thing I ever heard. How can you, of all people, you who was given the divine gift of a beautiful, loving and incredibly intelligent daughter and abandoned her, who perverted himself by denying this child the love she deserves just for the fact of being the daughter, dare to accuse her of perversion? GET. OUT. OF. MY. SIGHT!”

Maureen had never seen Stephanie like that and like her grandma probably never suspected her to have that kind of strength. To everybody’s surprise on top of that Niamh and Ryan had taken a side of her each and were equally glowering at Maureen’s mother and father.
“You do not own this place ...” Maureen’s mother hissed while her husband was too stunned to react.
“But my parents do!” Little Niamh said clearly “Now which part of GET OUT did you not understand?”
That actually produced a chuckle from John, who was watching the scene from the doorway, and a couple of giggles from some girls who were also watching in fascination. The girl who had slapped that man was at most tall enough to look straight at his throat, but she nevertheless seemed to tower over him, small and delicate as she was. John thought it wise, though, to add his presence to the scene and walked over.
“I am Niamh’s father,” he said “I think you better leave quickly and quietly.”

The incredulous expressions on Maureen’s parents’ faces told their own story, but since everybody now seemed to either snicker or look at them with clear contempt they decided to make their way to the door.
“I don’t ever want to see you near my property again.” John told them as they left. Then he took Stephanie in one and his two children in his other arm and said:
“Well done, all of you!”
Maureen was still shell shocked and very pale, while her grandmother took her into her arms.
“All that was missing,” she said “was the flaming sword! Those two were just banned from paradise by your little angel.”
At that Maureen began to sob. John let Steph down and she was there instantly to hug her, Maureen the elder leaving her granddaughter to her love. The four children, Ryan, Niamh, Sinead and Roisin all came to hug her, too. Maureen could hardly believe what she was witnessing. There wasn’t a soul in the room who agreed with her parents. Maybe she would have to come to terms with never really having had loving parents. Stephanie’s words still remained in her mind: beautiful, loving and incredibly intelligent she had said about her and that she deserved to be loved by her parents for the simple fact of being the daughter alone. Why did that change when she admitted she was lesbian? Nobody else seemed to mind.

“I think you better forget them, my love.” Stephanie said softly while caressing her cheek “Some are just lost souls and cannot be recovered.”
“She is right, you know.” Maureen’s grandmother chimed in “But you, little angel, are something else entirely. There is hardly a man who ever dared to stand up to my son in law.”
“Had he raised his hand again,” Stephanie said with a shudder “I might just have killed him. I have never felt such rage before. How could he dare? If ever there was someone who is perverted it is them!”
“You were radiating God’s wrath there, Stephanie.” Maureen O’Connor said “Just as well. That way he was subdued. It is hard to believe you are not a fey or an angel.”
“When I just hugged her she felt quite real and human.” John said from behind Stephanie “But how she seemed to tower over him will always be a mystery to me.”
“As I said” Maureen O’Connor repeated “I SAW her radiating God’s wrath or whatever it was. But it certainly was powerful.”

“Can we just stop giving any more energy into that scene?” Stephanie asked “I don’t want any more of today spoiled by it.”
“You are right, of course,” John replied “Let us all have a drink to forget it ever happened. Please, everybody, come over to where we will be hearing music again tonight.”
He put one arm around each Maureen and led grandmother and granddaughter over to the other room, while the kids surrounded Stephanie, the two teenagers holding her and the two smaller ones the teenager’s hands. Everybody else followed looking on with smiles. Behind the bar Aileen and Colleen were busy drawing beers and filling glasses with lemonade for the teens and kids. John asked for some Tullamore Dew for himself and the two Maureens, while Stephanie, Brigit, Patrick, Roisin and Sinead were quietly talking already on the little stage.

“I think we should just improvise a little to start with, something quiet and peaceful for everybody to relax.” Brigit said.
“Yes,” Dónal agreed from the front of the stage “get the mood changed softly.”
“Right!” Stephanie agreed too “Brigit, give us all an A to get tuned to.”
Brigit did and Patrick and Roisin got the guitar and violin tuned respectively. Then Patrick started some beautiful soft runs on the guitar, and soon Sinead, Roisin and Brigit were tuned in and playing along. Then Stephanie started adding a wordless melody, using her voice just like another instrument, and as usual the room fell quiet apart from the music. It was too early yet to really start the concert, but they lay the foundations for the mood of what was later to follow.

Dónal could hardly believe how easily his two fell in step with the adult musicians, how they created music out of thin air, so to speak, and he started to get a feeling what it must have been like, when his two played along with Stephanie, when she had asked them to play a special music for someone they loved most. ‘It must have been amazing’ he thought ‘given how much they loved their mother.’ And sure enough that thought brought tears back to his eyes. But for some reason the pain was less, as he kind of felt her there, listening with joy to her kid’s music. It probably was only his imagination, but he was certain that she would have been ever so proud of them and that she would have loved Stephanie for her help with Sinead. But hadn’t Stephanie said she was still there in his heart? That certainly seemed true now. And for the first time after her death he felt a bit of peace.

Maureen O’Connor was thinking along similar lines, as she felt a little peace settle over the room. How could anyone ignore the beautiful gift this amazing young woman was giving everyone she touched by her presence? At least her daughter and son in law had certainly felt the strength she could draw from her love. Maureen had never seen her son in law stunned, yet small, beautiful and delicate Stephanie had achieved just that. And that slap must have really hurt. Yet now she was here, singing with her angelic voice and all one could feel come from her was love and beauty. How incredibly lucky her granddaughter and namesake was to have sought her out and found her. The two of them were a God-sent for Sinead, Dónal and Roisin and all the others at Exeter, that would be touched by their research project and their presence. Maureen, too, was someone to be very proud of. Beautiful, loving and incredibly intelligent Stephanie had said, which was true, but she also was still modest and never though of herself as superior to anyone. One really could not demand a more perfect child.

Sure enough a quiet atmosphere of peace and joy settled over the room and those, who had not witnessed the scene before quickly sensed that tonight again would be special. A definitely festive mood spread around the room.
“Can you believe the effect her voice has on the atmosphere?” Maureen asked her gran.
“There certainly aren’t many, who can sing like that.” Maureen the elder replied “But it is more than just her voice, Maureen, it is her ability to capture feelings and turn them into beautiful music. I just think it will only work live. She needs to resonate with her environment and the people in it. Then she makes all that into a beautiful experience for everyone.”
“And as we have experienced today, she is well capable of expelling unwelcome presences, flaming sword or not.” She added with a soft laugh.
“Gran, if you had experienced the timid and shy boy I found morosely sitting in that pub, you’d be hard put to believe your very own experience of today. But my friends and house mates Bhavana and Madelaine first coaxed her our of her shell and I have not regretted a single moment of being with her since. She has come such a long way!”

“And you, my lovely granddaughter, are too modest, of course, to claim your part in all this. Without your love, Maureen, where would poor Stephanie be today? You do not need to boast about it, but at least accept the fact, that you had an important part in this too. The two of you together are the real miracle here.”
“She is right, you know.” Aileen added, who had just finished behind the bar to join the musicians “Watching the two of you together and with my children is one of the most wonderful and at the same time enlightening experiences of my life.”

Just then the soft music had stopped and Stephanie had joined the little group.
“So,” she asked with a smile “all ready for a concert?”
“Ready or not,” Aileen laughed “when you sing, Stephanie, all people are able to do is listen and cry with joy.”
And thus the evening developed. This time there were so many people that it really got crowded, but nobody seemed to mind. All the songs they had planned got sung, all the instrumentals played and quite a number of improvisations with Stephanie using her voice like an instrument given as encores. Even after the music stopped because the two teenage musicians had to go home and to bed, the festive atmosphere remained and not one person went home without having shed some joyful tears. John more or less summed it up for everybody.
“This,” he said “was certainly the best evening of my life, on par with the one of my wedding.”

Chapter thirty six: the beach at night

The next day, finally, Stephanie and Maureen got their chance to go off to the beach on their own. Maureen O’Connor turned up with Sinead and Roisin to collect Niamh and Ryan for an outing together and Aileen packed a nice lunch again for Steph and Maureen. The two of them actually decided to take one backpack, the tent and the two sleeping bags, so that they could actually spend the night and watch the stars. Then, after a sumptuous breakfast, the two set off to Maureen’s favourite little cove. They arrived around noon and set up their little camp on the beach, far enough away from the flood line to be sure not to get wet during high tide.

They sat afterwards for quite a while looking out over the ocean, enjoying the peace and quiet and the sunshine. Stephanie sat between Maureen’s legs, firmly in her embrace, almost purring like a cat.
“Maureen, my love, this is heaven.” she sighed.
“My Angel,” Maureen replied “what you did yesterday I would never have thought possible. Where did you take the courage and power from?”
“I have no idea, other than that I suddenly felt this rage taking me, giving me urges I would not even dare to think about under normal circumstances. I just needed to defend you and put your parents in their place. How can anybody be so stupid? And to accuse you of spreading perversion among the children here, that just warranted a slap. It must have really hurt.”
“Yes, my little angel, it did hurt. A lot. It always has. Until yesterday I still loved them, but after you spoke I realised that they never really loved me, only what they wanted to make out of me.”
“How can they not see, that you turned out absolutely perfect? Loving, caring, intelligent and humble enough not to feel superior to someone like Dónal, me or the children.”
“Oh sweetie, to hear you speak about me makes me feel so special, what did I do to earn that?”

“You heard about me and came to look for me, remember? You were understanding, patient and persistent enough to make me talk to you and promised me, what we will be doing today, walk the beach at dusk and look at the stars. You accepted me, all of me, my fears and insecurities included. How could I not feel you are special?”
Maureen cuddled Stephanie even more closely.
“You are soooo sweet, my love! Every once in a while though, I get afraid it all is just a dream and I am going to wake up and you’re gone.”
Stephanie turned around in her arms and put her own around Maureen's neck, pulled her as close as was possible and whispered:
“Never, never ever am I going to leave you, Maureen. My life would be over without you. And this is as real as life can possibly get. I love you more than anything in this world.”
And with that she kissed Maureen, softly in a way, but also with so much desire and passion, that Maureen burst into happy tears, holding onto Stephanie as if for dear life, desire and passion rising inside her too.

It did not take long before they were hidden away in their tent, naked and making love. Both were amazed how their closeness and passion could still grow, yet it did. Nevertheless the way they made love remained soft and caring, caressing each other with ultimate tenderness and love so deep, that they cried with joy and happiness, as their souls united one more time in a shared climax. Stephanie looked at Maureen wide eyed when she had come back to earth and whispered:
“At the moment of our climax, my love, I saw a blonde woman of unearthly beauty shrouded in a golden glow smiling at us. And next to her were two red headed women, one looking like you, but the other … she was as tall as you but her unmistakeably feminine body just screamed warrior and flames were dancing in her hair. She wore a black catsuit sort of thing and silvery armour. But all three of them smiled at us as if they were perfectly content.”
“I saw the same, almost like in my dream that time, but this time I know who the blonde and the one looking like me are: Aphrodite and Brigit. The warrior one I have no idea about.”

“Do you believe Goddesses can exist in our time?” Stephanie asked aghast “and even appear to mortals like us?”
“I have never really been a religious person, Stephanie. But if I think about it … have we not recently been to one of the many temples of Aphrodite with Sinead and Roisin?”
“Well, you phrasing it like that has a certain ring of truth to it, my love.” Stephanie replied with a giggle.
“May be it was that warrior woman, who lent you a bit of her rage and power?”
“May be. I certainly never expected to feel anything like that. When I hit your father I actually was afraid his head might just snap off.”
“It really sounded like a gunshot, but then you must have used just the right power to stun him. I have never before seen him so flustered. And it really looked like you were towering over him.”
“It is over now, I think. He and your mother will stay away from us. And I hope those goddesses have somewhere to go where they don’t need us. I don’t mind them in my dreams, but my reality I’d like to control myself, now that I actually have the courage to do it.”

“OK,” Maureen said “it is close to dusk, let’s walk a little.”
They put on shorts and sweaters and walked the waterline barefooted holding hands. Stephanie had a feeling of being watched for a short moment, but then it faded away quickly and she started to sing softly as they walked, the waves playing around their feet. Then Stephanie stopped and pointed.
“Look!” she whispered “Venus is rising. And Venus is the Latin name for Aphrodite.”
They stood for quite a while, watching first Venus and then Jupiter and finally the moon appear. Both felt completely at ease and in harmony with their surroundings. Then they walked to the end of the beach, turned around and slowly made their way back to their little camp, where thy made themselves comfortable in front of the tent and prepared a lovely meal with what Aileen had packed for them. They opened the bottle of sparkling wine that was also included.

Neither of the two would later be able to precisely describe what they had felt other than to say it had been some kind of union with the whole of creation and each other, as they sat gazing at the night sky sipping sparkling wine. Then, as it was now dark, they got a blanket out and took off their clothes to make love again, under the stars by the light of the moon. This time Stephanie’s song of love seemed to fill the whole cove, even though she was singing only very softly. She and Maureen found themselves bathed in moonlight and transported to places of bliss they never thought could exist. When they had come back from the clouds Stephanie said:
“Now, my love, we are married. Who needs other than the moon and nature to bless a union?”
And crying happy tears they lay in each other’s arms for a long time.

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