Ruby said no to me again.
We were alone by the pool for a few minutes while Tiffany had gone into the house to help Gloria in the kitchen. I just wanted to spend some time with her, helping her remember how good it had been between us.
She acted like what I wanted disgusted her as if she had that right. I'm the one who's always called the shots in everything I've done in my life since I broke free of working for the government. That lifestyle had attracted many, good pay, benefits but it'd been like working for my old man year ago. So I cut loose of that cord as soon as I could, earned more money, had more freedom to do what I chose and more importantly not do what I didn't choose.
"God, Tiffany's only gone for a moment," she'd said, "You'd risk it?"
Of course…I was the master at evaluating and taking risks. I'd done so here and found them to be minimal. My wife was busy in the kitchen, probably on the phone by now with one of her committee members planning the next meeting. Tiffany was there but she didn't seem in any hurry to come back to the pool where her dad waited.
I knew she'd been ticked off with what I'd done with Megan or what she thought I did but she hadn't said anything since that day. She just avoided me when possible, exiting my proximity at the first chance, the first opening. So that told me that Ruby and I would have enough time alone to slip away into the cabana and get what we both needed.
What I needed.
Fucking those other women had damped what I wanted from her but only for a while. I looked at her on the desk and all I wanted to do was to tear off her bikini and thrust the hard on I'd been wearing in my briefs into that pussy she had and get my release. I wanted to hear her sigh against me, feel her fingers digging into my skin and her smooth thighs grip my waist.
Was that so wrong? After all, she'd come to me willingly. She didn't throw herself at me but she came close. She wanted me; gotten me all stirred up, gave me a little taste of her and then pushed me away from her.
Fucking tease, she'd turned out to be. None of the other women had done that, maybe at first but not once I had them in bed. I took what I wanted as long as I wanted and then said goodbye. I began and ended things with women but not this time.
Ruby had done that and I knew now she meant it. That she couldn't be swayed away from it. Not so far. But I knew I could change that if I had the perfect strategic plan. Like I created for an assignment that I accepted to carry it out successfully…that would be what I did here.
Then I thought of the secret that she kept hidden, the one about my daughter. That she knew her so much better than I did. Knew that her loser boyfriend Chad might have knocked her up….if she'd needed to go out and buy a damn pregnancy test in front of the entire town.
She might as well have done that given that a gossip worked the front counter and had spread the news so quickly.
Ruby walked away and I was left on the desk with my hard on. Gloria walked back on the deck.
"The water's nice?"
I nodded but it hadn't cooled me off much.
"That's good…maybe I'll take a swim later but…I've got to meet Nancy to discuss the ballroom decorations."
"About a couple of hours oh and we're meeting at the Priory so I've left you and Tiffany some leftovers in the freezer."
I nodded again and reached for my towel. I didn't want to spend the rest of my time in the house especially if Ruby stayed over. Too much damn temptation to be sharing a house with her…but I knew that Brock was in town and she'd likely be staying with him.
An image of him and my wife flashed in front of me. She was astride him, her naked skin sliding against his and his hands palming her breasts thumbing her large rosy nipples. She'd cry out I knew it because she'd always loved nipple play and sometimes she got it.
"Maybe I'll go out…check out the jazz club."
Gloria just nodded absently before heading back in the house but both Ruby and Tiffany came back out with some cookies on a plate. Tiffany put them on the table.
"Want one dad?"
Her voice, polite, her eyes not looking at me….and me wanting so much to ask if that lowlife bouncer had left her pregnant…. But with Ruby there, I kept quiet. She seemed in a better mood than I'd seen her in a while talking with Tiffany.
"Lars got called away on business," Tiffany said, "and I know you'll be with Brock so maybe I'll just hit the movies."
I seethed at the mention of Brock's name.
Ruby picked up a cookie.
"Yeah we're doing takeout," she said, "and a movie on the couch."
I didn't want to hear about the couch or even think about it. I wondered how far they'd make it through a movie before they fucked. If it were me, there wouldn't be a movie, I'd just move straight to taking her hard on the floor.
I took a deep breath pushing those thoughts away. I got up and sat further away reading a magazine but I still heard quite well.
"So when does she get back?"
Ruby fell quiet, her hands on her lap after she finished her cookie.
"A month…maybe…she might not come back."
That perked my interest. I'd assumed that he'd bookmarked his girlfriend for her return. After he'd dropped Ruby and she returned to school.
"What do you mean?"
Ruby reached for another cookie.
"Things aren't going great," she said, "They hadn't been for a while."
Tiffany poured herself another glass of the iced sweet tea.
"So what does that mean for you?"
"I'm going back to school Tiffany, back to our life there."
Tiffany shook her head.
"Damn you really meant it when you said it'd be a summer fling."
I smiled to myself that Ruby wasn't mooning over Brock. I doubted he was serious about her either but then that left room for me.
After all, it wouldn't be over between us until I decided.
"I do like him a lot," Ruby said, "He's really almost sweet sometimes and I…that just doesn't fit…"
Tiffany narrowed her eyes.
"What do you mean," she said, "Sometimes sweet can be downright sexy…in the right circumstances of course…as long as they don't make a habit of it."
"I've enjoyed it but it's going to end when we go back."
I sat at the jazz club several hours later listening to the smooth rhythms of the trio playing before a lively audience. Angela had been there with her husband but she sidled over to me at the wet bar during intermission.
"So how are things going?"
I kept my response noncommittal, terse. She only acted innocent but I knew she was up to something because she was Angela.
"I saw Gloria and Nancy at the Priory. They looked like they were having a good time."
I ordered my whisky.
"I know about the planning meeting tonight."
"Oh yeah that but I overheard them talking about going to a little party tomorrow night at one of the boutiques."
I didn't care about any damn party.
"What my wife does…"
"Okay fine," she said, "but it's at Lacey's boutique."
I didn't know any Lacey but then I didn't spend much of my time shopping.
She sipped her wine slowly clearly savoring what she had to say next.
"It's a sex shop…well not really a sex shop but it sells sexy clothing and…other things."
My eyebrows shot up. I didn't picture Gloria shopping at a place like that. She didn't seem into it anymore. She spent so much time outside the house busy with assorted committees and when she was home, she seemed distant.
"Trying to spice up the marriage I guess," Angela said, "but you've been very naughty haven't you Devlin?"
I sighed so that was what she was getting at, the fact that she knew there had been other women. But I wasn't too worried about her because I knew she'd never tell on me to Gloria.
"Like I said, what Gloria does…"
"Oh you say that Devlin, but I know inside you're wondering how you can find out why she'd attend such a party. Oh I'm going too but just to liven things up with my husband."
Angela had a wandering eye as long as I'd known her and her husband had his thing for young girls who worked in his office.
My wife didn't cheat on me and she didn't even think of it. I didn't know why she'd be going to this boutique but figured it was harmless. She was too much into self-improvement to have time for anything else.
Even an affair.
But then I remembered her and Brock and then wondered if she was remembering him too. No, that ship had passed years ago. I knew that but still a part of me wondered.
The intermission ended and Angela walked back to sit with her husband pleased no doubt with the belief she'd stirred me up. But she hadn't had that effect on me at all. I knew my own wife, I know I did and if she had plans to start things up again with Brock I'd learn quickly enough.
And then I'd deal with it.