Plans

Plans

Status: Finished

Genre: Romance

Details

Status: Finished

Genre: Romance

Summary

Patrick is a young Catholic priest who, despite his best efforts, ends up falling in love with a woman in his parish. Enjoy, and please comment.

Summary

Patrick is a young Catholic priest who, despite his best efforts, ends up falling in love with a woman in his parish. Enjoy, and please comment.

Content

Submitted: March 05, 2015

A A A | A A A

Content

Submitted: March 05, 2015

A A A

A A A


Fr Patrick Donovan moved to the Marysburg parish after six years at an inner city church.  Marysburg was, on paper, a step up for him.  It was a larger parish, with nicer facilities and a school to boot- a good posting for a priest in his early thirties.  That being said, he wasn’t looking forward to it.  He felt he had been doing real work where he was.  He couldn’t imagine himself solving any real problems for his parishioners in Marysburg.  Not like he had in his old low income/ high crime neighborhood.

The night before he took over for Fr John, who was retiring, they drank a few beers together in the rectory.  As Fr John was saying goodbye to his old home, and Patrick was getting used to his new one, Fr John took it upon himself to chat with Patrick about some of his more challenging parishioners.

There was Arlys, the zealous confessor, who so clearly had undiagnosed obsessive-compulsive disorder.  There was George, the serial cheater, who gleefully confessed each of his escapades in great detail-too much detail.  And there was Naomi, the argumentative young widow.  She usually alternated between challenging church doctrine and debating the existence and nature of God- exhaustively.

Patrick transitioned smoothly into his new role as the leader of a calm, peaceful, untroubled flock.  After two weeks, a woman came up to him after early mass and introduced herself to him.  When she gave her name, he put two and two together and realized that she must be the Naomi that Fr John had mentioned.  The old priest had said that she was young, but Fr Patrick hadn’t expected a woman in her mid-twenties.  She was pretty.  Other men might have called her cute or sexy- Patrick tended not to let his mind wander in those directions.  She had severely curly brown hair pulled back carelessly into a knot at her neck.  Patrick was surprised that someone so young and good looking, without children, hadn’t remarried yet.  He noticed, however, that she had worn ripped jeans and a band t-shirt to mass- as if she were daring people to disapprove of her.  Maybe she was just too bitter to form a good relationship, he thought.

“Big Red told me that you run on a treadmill at the rectory.”  Naomi said.  (Big Red was the church secretary.  She was very tall and had shocking, natural red hair.)

“Yes I do.  It’s a good form of stress relief and it offsets the sedentary nature of being a priest.”

“It’s a crime to run indoors around here.  There’s a beautiful path all the way around the reservoir.  Or there’s the stairs in the bluff if you really want to blow off some steam.”

Patrick thanked her for the advice and she left him to chat with an elderly couple who were waiting for a chance to speak with him.

He did try running on the trail around the reservoir.  Running outside was different for him.  He had always preferred to run on a treadmill because it made it easier to set a pace.  You also didn’t have to worry about weather, or bumping into people who wanted to chat.  But despite the limitations of the outdoors, Patrick enjoyed the scenery and running in the fresh air.  He made good time on the four mile route around the reservoir.  He decided to make a habit of running there.

He met Naomi a few more times after mass in the weeks that followed.  She went to confession a few times as well.  Confession was a loose word for what she did, which was to come in to the confessional and pose a theological question, which she would then explore out loud.  The first time it went a little something like this: she asked him if he believed in the Big Bang Theory.  He said that the important thing wasn’t to get hung up on the details of what did, or didn’t happen at creation, but to know that God was behind it and that it was good.  She chuckled and asked him if that meant that we could pick and choose what we believed in the Bible.

The back and forth continued like this for all of her confessions.  Patrick could tell that she enjoyed the banter.  Patrick did too in a way.  He felt that she was sharpening up his religious theories.  It felt good to be challenged.

He didn’t meet her outside of the confessional again until about two months into his stay.  He was doing some warm-up stretching in the trail parking lot at the reservoir and she pulled in.  It was early, before sunrise, and he was surprised to see anyone there at that hour.  So was she.  She politely asked him if he would like to run with her.  Though he would have preferred to run alone, he said yes.  Partly it was to not seem rude, and partly it was out of concern for her safety running alone in such an isolated place in the dark.

He was surprised by how much he enjoyed running with someone else.  She set a good pace for him.  Running had never been effortless for Patrick the way it seemed for some others.  He enjoyed it, but it was hard work.  Naomi was one of those people who made it look effortless.  He was also amazed to see that she was running barefoot.  He asked her about it and she said that it wasn’t something that she did all the time, but she liked how quiet it was.  She admitted that it made her feel more graceful.  “It took me a long time to toughen up the soles of my feet.” She said.  “Don’t look too closely at them.” She added, laughing.  “They aren’t so pretty anymore.”

She chatted a little more on the run without seeming to get out of breath at all.  The four miles took them about 45 minutes to run and by the end of it, Patrick was starting to get a runner’s high.  The good feeling stayed with him all day.

They bumped into each other by accident a few more times that year out at the reservoir and ran together.  They enjoyed each other’s company more each time.  After the fifth or sixth time they had run together, Patrick suggested that they actually make plans to run together the next time.

So they started to set times, a couple of times a week, to run.  Patrick’s schedule was busy and erratic, but Naomi, who worked from home, was flexible enough to be accommodating.

Naomi pushed Patrick’s limits, which he liked.  With her, he ran faster than he would have run on his own.  She even got him to run the bluff.  The bluff was a long set of cement stairs poured into the hillside of the valley that bordered the town on the south side.  It was only a short distance from the Church.  It offered some amazing views and scenery, but after running it with Naomi, Patrick could barely walk for a few days afterward.  She enjoyed teasing him about it, but he could see that she was stiff too.

They talked a lot on their runs.  Naomi told him about how her husband had died.  (It was a drunk driving accident.  He had been the drunk one.)  She told him about how she had been so heartbroken, but also so angry with him.  She opened up to him, but not all of their conversations were serious.  She made him laugh too.  As a priest, most people didn’t to Patrick about things that were ‘inappropriate’.  Naomi didn’t seem to have any such filter.  She talked to him like a friend, not like a priest.

If anyone teased them about spending time together, they were both quick to point out the practical aspects of their runs.  Patrick would often refer to her as his ‘personal trainer’ and joke about how hard she pushed him.  Naomi would quip about killing two birds with one stone- doing her running and confessing at the same time.  Everything was perfectly innocent.

Until it wasn’t.

It was late afternoon about three years into Fr Patrick’s service in Marysburg and he and Naomi were getting in a run before Patrick had to teach CCD at the school.  There were big, menacing clouds hanging in the sky and you could smell the rain coming.  They decided to run anyway.  Naomi was quick to point out that it wouldn’t be the first time that they had run in the rain.  Neither one of the them was surprised when the first drops started, or even when it started to pour, but when it started to hail, they looked at each other with concern.  The reservoir trail was exposed for the most part.  “Come on.” Naomi said, and sprinted for a tiny maintenance shed about a quarter mile down the trail.  By the time they got there, they were wincing with every piece of hail that hit them.  The shed was locked, but the overhang and doorway were just big enough for both of them to stand together under.  They watched as the hail went from dime-sized to golf ball-sized.  The air had chilled dramatically.  He could see his breath.  They were inches away from each other, close enough that he could feel the heat off of her skin.  Her clothing was drenched and clung to her.  He realized that he wanted to kiss her.  When she turned and looked up at him and smiled, the urge to do so was almost irresistible.

It wasn’t that he hadn’t thought about it before.  He was, after all, a heterosexual male and she was a beautiful woman.  But he had never been in the position where he had needed to consciously stop himself from acting on his impulses.

When the hail stopped, they finished their run.  Naomi chattered cheerfully about how they had almost been beaten to death by ice.  Patrick was quieter than usual.  Things had gone too far without him realizing it.  He was falling for her.

In the weeks that followed, Patrick cancelled their running sessions.  He was polite and apologetic, but distant with her.  Even when she met him after church a few times, he was more stand-offish than usual.  He did his best to put her out of his mind.  He kept himself busy during the day and that helped, but at night, when he closed his eyes, he found that all he could think about was her.Things were getting worse, despite his efforts to stay away from her.  Patrick was also worried that Naomi would confront him about being distant.  He worried that she would demand an explanation.  He was right to worry.

One night, around nine, the doorbell to the rectory rang.  Patrick was alone for the evening working on some paperwork.  He answered the door and there she was.  She was dressed in jeans and a band t-shirt like she had been the first day he met her.  His heart dropped into his stomach.  Partly it was from fear- he knew that this was the confrontation that he had been dreading.  But mostly his stomach dropped because of how beautiful she looked.  The streetlight threw an orange glow over her and she had a determined look on her face.

He invited her in and they walked back to the office.  He stood behind the desk- unconsciously putting the heavy piece of furniture between them to stop himself from getting too close.  She closed the door behind her.

“Why are you avoiding me?”  She asked bluntly.

“I’m not avoiding you.” said Patrick.  “I’ve just needed to focus on parish business more.”  It wasn’t exactly a lie.  There was always more that needed to be done at the Church.

“I just want you to be honest with me.”  She said slowly.

Patrick laughed it off- literally.  He gave her the best smile he could muster up at the moment and said: “Don’t be silly, Naomi.  I’ve just been very busy lately.”  He gestured lamely at the paperwork in front of him as if it were some kind of proof.

“Are you in love with me?”

She had said it.  The word hung in the air.  Patrick was stunned.  Yes, he wanted to say, but he bit it back.  He recovered as quickly as he could.

He smiled again.  “No Naomi, Where would you get an idea like that?  I enjoy your company, but I’m certainly not in love with you.”  He gave her another polite smile and tried to make it look perplexed.

“You’re lying.” She said.  She looked shocked and angry.  Patrick wasn’t prepared for her reaction.  He hadn’t been prepared for any of this.

“I don’t know what you want me to say.”  He said, honestly.

“I want the truth.  Fuck, Patrick, I know your position.  I’m not asking anything from you.  I don’t expect anything to change.  I just want you to say it. “

“Naomi, I’m not in love with you.”

“So that’s it then?  You’re just going to shut me out?  Ignore whatever it is you’ve got going on?  You think that you’re the only one who’s been struggling?  You fucking coward- at least I can admit it.  I’m in love with you.  –There.  I can say it.  I don’t need to ignore the problem and hide behind lame excuses.  I at least have the decency to let you know how I feel.”  She was starting to cry.  She wiped away a tear with an irritated gesture.  Patrick’s heart broke.

He had thought being in love with her was the worst thing that could happen to him.  He was wrong.  Knowing that she loved him back, being unable to comfort her, knowing that he had hurt her- this was so much worse.

There was nothing that he could say.

She drew in a shaky breath.  “I’m sorry.”  She said.  “I’m all messed up.  I’ll just leave.”

And Patrick watched her go.  He told himself that he couldn’t afford to follow her like he wanted to.  He needed to stay strong, pray to God for both himself and Naomi.  But there was a part of himself that was screaming at him, telling him that he was a coward, that he was a monster to let her walk away from him.  He realized that his hands were balled up on the top of his desk.  His knuckles were white and he had to force his hands to un-clench.  No wonder she had been able to see through his lies.  His body language through the whole encounter must have made him look like some sort of cornered animal.  He should have told her the truth instead of lying through his teeth.  A better priest would have been honest.  A better priest would have talked it over with her.  A better priest would have been honest, but firm that the relationship was not going to progress.  A better priest would have helped a parishioner who had so clearly been in need of guidance.  But a better priest wouldn’t have fallen in love in the first place.

Patrick went to the cupboard in the bookcase and took out the bottle of scotch and a glass.  He poured himself a drink and downed it in one swallow.  He had never felt worse in his life.  He poured himself another.  There was no solution to this problem.  He had made a mess of things from start to finish.  Every mistake along the way had been his and his alone.  And now Naomi was paying for his carelessness.  He was the one who had gotten too close to her.  He was the one who had lied to her face.  After everything she had been through, she didn’t deserve to have him show up and mess up her life.  Patrick had never been so frustrated and disappointed in himself.  He stared at the drink in his hand- just one more bad decision in a long string of bad decisions.  He threw the glass against the wall and it shattered.

He left the pieces where they lay and walked back to the desk.  He opened up his laptop, determined to do something to right all the wrong that he had caused.  He pulled up Naomi’s e-mail address and began to write to her:

Naomi,

I never meant to hurt you.  You’re right.  I am a coward.  I am in love with you.  I couldn’t admit it when you were here.  I thought that if I didn’t say it out loud, it wouldn’t be true.  I wasn’t sure, once I crossed that line, if I would be able to stop myself from crossing the next line, and then the next, and then the next…  As you said, you know what my situation is.  I can’t act on the feelings that I have for you.  The last thing I wanted was to hurt you.  I’ve made such a mess of things.  I’m so sorry, Naomi.  Please forgive me.

-Patrick

He hit the send button before he changed his mind.  He got up and walked out of the office, out of the rectory into the church.  He fell to his knees in front of the large cross and began to pray, but he couldn’t focus on his prayers.  He thought about the way she had looked at him in the office.  He played over and over in his head the moment that she had told him that she loved him. He thought about her on the day of the hail storm and how badly he had wanted to kiss her.  He couldn’t help himself.  He pictured how things might have been different between them if he were someone different.  What if he had just given in?  Part of him wished that he had.  He tried to brush the thought away.

Eventually she would meet someone else, Patrick thought, someone who would be able to give her a relationship.  Patrick thought about another man with her, doing all the things with her that Patrick wanted so desperately to do…

He couldn’t stay in the chapel any longer.  He needed to do something really distracting.  He needed to burn off this desire that he had.  He got up and with one last silent prayer for forgiveness, turned and walked back to the rectory to change.

He threw on a t-shirt, some running shorts, and his running shoes and stepped out the door in the direction of the bluff.  He wanted to do something that was really going to burn.  He wanted, in a lot of ways, to punish himself.  The stairs were the perfect thing.

He ran to the top of them quickly and started down the long flight of steps at a good pace.  The night was warm and there was no breeze.  He prayed while he ran.  He asked for some sort of sign to help him know how to fix the mess he had made.  The humidity made everything feel slow and dream-like.  He reached the bottom and without stopping, turned and started back up the stairs.  With every step he tried to burn out his frustration, wear down his preoccupation with her.

He rounded one of the turns in the hill and then he saw her.  They both stopped short.  She was about ten feet away from him on the stairs, coming down them, facing him.  For a minute neither of them spoke.  They were both breathing hard.

She was so beautiful.  He couldn’t stop himself from thinking it.  He could see the skin of her belly and ribs beneath the cut-up shirt that she wore over her sports bra.  Her shorts left her legs and thighs exposed and she was barefoot tonight.  There was something so intimate in the fact that she was barefoot.  He had never thought about it before, but it had always made her seem naked and vulnerable.  She had clearly been crying.  Her eyes were puffy and red.  It broke his heart to know that he had made her cry.

Why had God made her look so beautiful tonight?  Why had He made them run into each other at all?  Didn’t God realize just how close Patrick was to losing the will that he had?

“I got your e-mail…  I didn’t expect you to be here.”  She said, breaking the silence.  But Patrick was fighting too hard with himself to say anything back.  They stood looking at each other.

What kind of God would want me to say no to something so good?  He thought.  What kind of God would put her here in front of me?

“Patrick…”  She said.

And in an instant, Patrick realized three things.  First, his feelings for Naomi weren’t bad.  The God Patrick knew and loved would never call what he was feeling right now ‘bad’.

Second, Patrick had asked God for a sign.  Well, her appearing in front of him, in the middle of nowhere, in the middle of the night, was as close to a sign from God as you could get.

And lastly, Patrick didn’t give a fuck anymore.  He was done debating right and wrong.  He was through fighting something that felt so right.

“I’ve been such an idiot.” He said.  He walked up to her and kissed her.  She leaned into him and wrapped her arms around him.  He could feel one of her hands on his back, pulling him closer.  She slid the fingers of her other hand through his hair.  The simple feeling of being touched was a shock.  He had deprived himself of it for so long, he had forgotten how good it could feel.

This was it.  There was no going back for him.

Her body was pressed against his, leaning in.  He could feel her skin through her ripped t-shirt as he moved his hands from her back to her waist.  She was wearing so little that it was easy to imagine her completely naked against him.  She had never dressed this scantily when they had gone on runs together.  But though she was wearing so little, it was still too much.  He wanted desperately to pull it all off of her.

She was clearly having the same thoughts.  Her hands slipped under his shirt and started to tug upwards.  He pulled it off in one quick, impatient gesture.  Then he pulled her close to him again and leaned down to kiss her neck.  He caught a spot just below her ear that made her gasp.  The sound drove him crazy.  He wanted more.

He bit her gently in the same spot and she gave him what he wanted; she cried out softly and her nails scraped the bare skin on his back.

Patrick pulled off her shirt and then her sports bra in quick urgent motions.  Then he grabbed her by the hips and lifted her against him.  She wrapped her legs around him.  He carried her over to the wall and pinned her against it so that she was half sitting on the narrow railing.  Patrick kissed her on the mouth again and then trailed kissed down to her breasts.  His hand moved slowly up her thigh.  Her breath got faster and shallower as he slipped his hand up under her running shorts.

He felt like his knees were going to buckle when he realized that she wasn’t wearing any underwear.  “Oh fuck..” he half moaned, half whispered when he felt how wet she was.  He slipped his fingers inside her and she cried out.

She didn’t let him continue for long.  She pulled at his shorts and when he didn’t immediately oblige, she whispered: “please…”  He wanted to hear her beg more, but he couldn’t wait any longer.  He slid down his shorts and pulled hers to the side.  He pushed himself slowly into her.  He kissed her as he buried himself deep into her again and again until she came, tightening around him in a way that he couldn’t resist.  He let himself come as she finished.  He buried his face in her neck saying her name and telling her that he loved her.

They stayed like that for a moment.  His forehead rested on her collarbone.  Her fingers ran slowly through his hair.  Then he looked up at her and kissed her slowly.

“Come home with me tonight” she asked quietly.  Patrick smiled and said yes and then kissed her again.

They picked up their clothes off the pavement and Patrick watched with a feeling of amused sadness as Naomi squeezed back into her sports bra.  He grabbed her hand and they headed back up the stairs.

“Where do you see things going from here?”  Naomi asked tentatively.  Patrick paused and looked at her.  “I don’t want you to feel pressured by the choices I’m about to make.”  He said.  He continued.  “If you wake up a week from today and decide that you never want to see me again, I don’t want you to feel guilty, my choices are mine to make and I would never want you to feel responsible if things didn’t go right.”  They started walking again.  “Tomorrow is Saturday.   I’m going to make some calls.  I’ll get Fr. John to come back to say mass this weekend and I’ll call the bishop to send a more permanent replacement for me.  It’ll be tough, but they’ll find someone.  I’ll make a short announcement at mass and tell the parish that I can’t serve them anymore.  I’ll rent a motel room until I can find an apartment.  I’ll get a job.  I’ve got enough saved up to be ok for a little while until I figure things out.  We can take this as slow or as quickly as you would like.”  Naomi was shaking her head.  Patrick felt his stomach clench.  Was this too much for her?  Was he scaring her away from him?

“Just move in with me.”  She said

“I told you, I don’t want you to feel pressured” He said with relief.  He was overjoyed.  She wasn’t going to run.

“I want to wake up next to you in the mornings” she said, simply.

“So do I.”

They got into Naomi’s car and she pulled out of the small parking lot.  Once they were on the road, she chuckled to herself.  Patrick gave her a quizzical look.

“Before I got your e-mail tonight I was so angry.  I had been thinking of ways to get even with you.  I thought about going to confession before mass and talking dirty to you through the screen.”  All Patrick’s attention snapped into focus on what she was saying.  The thought of her talking dirty to him made him instantly hard again.  “I was thinking about going in and telling you all the things that I want you to do to me in minute detail.  I would have told you how I want you to fuck me in every room of my house- in every position.  I wanted to tell you how wet you make me, constantly.  I thought about confessing that I touch myself sometimes when I think about you.”  Patrick leaned his head back against the headrest and closed his eyes.  He focused on breathing.  The drive to her house was taking far too long.  No one had ever talked to him this way.  It was driving him insane.

“I was going to tell you all the nasty little details of my fantasies with you and then watch you try to say mass after.”

Patrick started to laugh.  “There’s no way…  You have no idea what that would have done to me.  I would have needed to spend the rest of the day in a cold shower before I could even have had a conversation, let alone say mass.”  Then in a more serious tone he said: “You have no idea what you do to me, Naomi.”

She pulled into her driveway and they got out of the car.  Patrick had only been to her house a couple of times and he had never been inside farther than the entryway.  She grabbed his hand and pulled him in.  “Welcome home” she whispered in his ear.  She kissed him and then pulled away from him again.  She smiled seductively at him, then turned her back on him and started walking up the stairs.  As she walked up them she pulled off her shirt and let it fall on the steps.  Patrick followed her.  He could see a small trail of wetness slide down her leg as she walked- evidence that he had fucked her at the bluff.  Patrick was sure that he was going to have a heart attack before the night was over if she kept getting him this worked up.  She shed her bra at the top of the stairs and then walked in to one of the rooms.  She turned the light on and then turned to face him.  She pulled off her shorts and stood naked in front of him before crawling backwards onto the bed.  She lay there, knees bent, legs spread wide apart, her arms propped up on her elbows, looking at him.

He took off his clothes and then crawled up onto the bed in between her legs.  He wanted to take his time with her.  He kissed her mouth, her neck, her breasts…  His right hand cupped the side of her face and he traced her lips with his thumb.  She pulled the tip of it into her mouth and bit it.  Then she pulled it all the way in and sucked hard.  She ran her tongue up and down the length of it inside her mouth as she sucked.  Patrick groaned.  His cock throbbed against her thigh, greedy for the attention his thumb was getting.

Naomi pushed him over on to his back and straddled him.  Looking him in the eye, she slid herself down onto him.  Patrick grabbed her hips and pushed as deep as he could go.  She started to ride him.  It felt so damn good, but it was too fast, she was going to make him come too soon.  He grabbed her and rolled them both over without slipping out of her.  He fucked her slowly.  Every time he felt himself get close to coming he paused, regaining his composure as he enjoyed her begging and squirming underneath him.  He pushed into her again and she arched her back under him.She moaned his name and then held her breath.  He could tell that she was about to come.  He let himself push deeper into her, letting his self control slip.  Like before, when she tightened around him he couldn’t resist.  He came with her, not stopping until he was spent and her body relaxed.  He collapsed on top of her.

 

The next morning Big Red met him at the door of the rectory, where he showed up looking messy, and wearing his running clothes.  She gave him a mug of coffee and a knowing smile and then told him that she wasn’t his maid and that he could clean up the broken glass in the office himself.

Patrick made his phone calls like he said he would.  Fr John was easy.  He sounded only mildly annoyed to be called in.  The call to the bishop was worse.  Voices were raised but Patrick didn’t back down.  At one point his voice carried through the door and Red heard him say “You don’t understand, I have no intention of asking forgiveness for what I’ve done and I fully intend to go back and sleep with her tonight, and the night after that, and the night after that…”  He knew he was putting the Church in a bad position, and he was sorry for that, but he wasn’t about to be bullied.

Naomi showed up at evening mass for support and he made his announcement to the congregation.  It was short and to the point.  He told them that something wonderful had happened to him, but that it made him unable to be their priest.  Most of the parishioners put two and two together when they saw him sitting next to Naomi for the service.  After the mass he went alone to the chapel.  He told Naomi that he would meet her at home.  In the chapel he knelt down and thanked God for her.  When he was done with his prayers, he got up, walked out of the Church, and went home the woman he loved.


© Copyright 2017 Scavenger. All rights reserved.

Add Your Comments:

Comments

avatar

Author
Reply

Other Content by Scavenger

More Great Reading

Popular Tags