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Candace and the Frat Boys (Chapter 5)
Kathryn M. Burke
Candace was already puttering in the kitchen when her daughter, looking a bit the worse for wear, padded in, wearing only a nightgown and slippers. Candace looked her up and down and said with a smirk: “Rough night?”
“Oh, come on, Mom,” Julie said wearily, “I’m not in the mood for teasing.”
“Sorry. Actually I hope you had a nice time with Josh. It’s a—”
“I know, I know: ‘it’s a big step for a girl.’ Okay, I’ve taken that step—more like a leap, I think.”
Candace’s smile broadened. “Josh worked you over pretty well, huh?”
“You might say that,” Julie said—and winced as she sat down at the kitchen table with a huge mug of coffee.
Her mother’s eyebrows went up. “Don’t tell me he”—pointing to her own posterior.
“Yes, he did.”
“Gee, I’m not sure you’re ready for that.”
“That’s what I told him. But I decided to take the plunge anyway.”
“So how was it?”
Julie paused a moment, staring off into space, then spat: “It hurt like hell!”
Candace’s expression softened. “I’m sorry, dear.”
“I don’t know how anyone gets used to it. And yet, you—”
“Yeah, I like it just fine. Just takes practice, my dear.”
“I’m not sure I want to get the practice.”
“There’s no law saying a girl has to do it. But—”
“I know, Josh likes it a lot. He made that pretty obvious.”
“There are plenty of other things you can do.”
“You mean—?” And she pointed to her mouth. “I’m not sure I like that very much either.”
“You mean sucking? Not sure you’ll ever be able to get away denying a guy that.”
“No, I don’t mean that. I mean . . . swallowing.”
“Oh, that. Well, I’ll be honest with you: I’m not very keen on the taste either.”
“Or the texture. So slimy!”
“Fair enough. But trust me, Julie, you’ll really hurt a guy’s feelings if you spit it out.”
“Well, I did spit some of it out, and Josh didn’t seem to mind.”
“That’s because he’s such a sweetheart. He’ll never tell you that you hurt his feelings doing that.”
Julie gazed at her mother with an inscrutable expression. After a long interval she said: “Mom, is it really okay what I did?”
“I don’t follow you.”
“Oh, come on, Mom! He—he’s your . . .” She trailed off.
“My boyfriend?” Candace supplied. “Yeah, I know that sounds odd. I guess he is, though.”
“Well, if he is, then shouldn’t you be furious that I went behind your back to sleep with him? Jesus, I’m sure I would be!”
Candace paused for reflection. “Well, the situation is not quite the usual one, is it?”
“I’ll say it isn’t!”
“In the first place, I’m not sure he really is my ‘boyfriend.’ I don’t know what to call him, but—”
“How about ‘boy toy’?”
“Please, Julie, that’s vulgar. I do care for him a lot, you know.”
“He—he says you love him.”
Candace sighed. “Yes, I guess I do.”
“And he loves you.”
“That’s for sure. But it’s not really what most people would expect when those terms get used. I’ll be frank with you: I’m not sure how long he’s going to be around—at least, around me. I mean, when he’s thirty-seven I’ll be sixty, for God’s sake! He’s not gonna want an old woman like me hanging onto him!”
“You’re not going to be old at sixty—you of all people.”
“Well, thank you for that—but you get my point. And anyway, as for where you come in—you’re my daughter, and if anyone aside from me is going to cuddle up with Josh, it should be you. I’ve seen how close you’ve been getting these last few weeks.”
“Oh, Mom, we were just studying together! I’m not sure there was anything more to it than that.”
“Wasn’t there? In that case, you slipped into his bed pretty fast. That’s certainly not like you. Speaking of which, how is it that you were—um, untouched? Weren’t you living with that guy Brandon?”
It was Julie’s turn to sigh. “I explained that to Josh. I never let Brandon—you know . . .”
Julie grimaced. “Now who’s being vulgar? But yeah, I never did.”
“I don’t know. It just didn’t feel right with him.”
“So then what happened?”
“What do you think? He felt that, merely by virtue of our living together, he had the right to—”
“Most people—especially most guys—might have some reason to feel that way.”
“Well, he didn’t! So I told him to kiss my ass and I left.”
“Good for you. I never liked Brandon very much anyway.”
“He’s certainly no Josh.”
“No, he isn’t.”
There was another silence. Both women were wondering where Josh was, since the discussion was getting a bit uncomfortable. It got more so when Julie said:
“Mom, why did you do what you did last night?”
Again the raising of eyebrows. “Oh, so Josh told you?”
“I kind of forced it out of him.”
“Well, I figured he’d spill the beans sometime.”
“Mom, Jesus!” Julie exploded. “What were you thinking, going to that frat house poker oyna and—and—”
“And making myself available to the guys?”
“If you must put it that way. I mean, the idea of all those men—” Julie shivered in an ecstasy of horror.
“Don’t knock it until you’ve tried it.”
“I’m never going to try it! Christ, what are you trying to prove?”
“I’m not sure I’m trying to prove anything—except maybe that I’m still desirable at my advanced age.”
“Oh, come on, Mom! You don’t need to do that to know you’re desirable.”
“Your dad didn’t seem to think so.”
“Well, he’s an asshole.”
“I won’t disagree with you.”
“But—but you’ve just set feminism back a hundred years by these antics!”
“You think so?” Candace was riled up now. “Well, I think exactly the opposite. In your generation’s fashionable lingo, I think what I did was ’empowering.’ Consider this: here I am, taking on a dozen, two dozen guys over the span of several hours, and emerging fresh as a rose. (Well, okay, I needed a long hot shower afterwards, but you get my point.) What guy could have managed a fraction of what I did? He’d get exhausted after two or three or four women. His cock would fall off if he tried to fuck a dozen women one after the other.”
“Oh, Mom, it’s not the same thing! Men give, and we receive.”
“Yes, I see your point: they can go into us, but we can’t go into them. But the poor dears still have huge difficulty coming more than once. Josh is a rare exception in that regard. We can take one man after the other, have orgasm after orgasm, and still come back for more.”
“I won’t argue with you anymore. I just think it’s—unseemly.”
“Well, you can think what you like. I’m gonna keep on doing it, so long as they want me.”
Julie chortled. “Oh, they’ll want you all right. What guy is going to turn down free sex?”
“That’s true enough.”
“So . . .” Julie paused uncertainly. “So what do we do about Josh? I mean, he’s not going to dump you, and I hope he doesn’t dump me. So then—”
“Oh, Julie, the answer’s staring us in the face. We share.”
Julie closed her eyes at the enormity of what was being suggested, even though she knew this was exactly where the discussion was inexorably heading.
“Is that really how you want it?” she said in a soft voice.
“It’s probably how he wants it. So I guess we’ll be alternating.”
“What do you mean?”
“Julie, don’t be dense. He’ll spend one night with you, the next night with me, and so on.”
“God in heaven,” Julie breathed, “a guy who sleeps with a girl and his mother! Who lives this way?”
“Who cares who lives this way? We live this way, and that’s all that matters. We’re all consenting adults, so who the hell is going to tell us what we can or can’t do, so long as it doesn’t hurt anyone else?”
“Okay, okay. You don’t have to get so steamed about it.”
It was at this point that Josh finally wandered in, also looking as if he’d been through the ringer. He stopped short when he saw the two women, awkwardly making his way to each one of them and giving them a kiss on the mouth.
Sitting down heavily at the table, he said nervously, “Were you talking about me?”
The “sharing” of Josh proved to work out pretty well for all concerned. Candace and Julie had privately agreed that it might be best not to pressure the poor boy to “perform” every single night he was with one or the other of them—but, as it turned out, Josh seemed more than happy to poke them once, twice, or even more times night after night. Ah, the wonders a young man of twenty-one can achieve! It didn’t hurt that Josh, who (as he had explained to Candace, and later repeated to Julie) had felt unduly deprived of female companionship up to this point, now delightedly regarded himself as a kid in a candy store.
Thanksgiving proved to be festive, even though it was a modest affair. To even out the gender disparity, Matt from the frat house was invited over; and aside from the fact that he stared intently at Julie all evening, which made her a trifle uncomfortable, everyone had a good time and was well satiated by the abundance of food on hand.
With the onset of December, though, the young people had to buckle down to work, as term papers were due and final exams loomed. Candace watched the two with heads lowered over their textbooks at the dining table every evening, recalling how seriously she had taken her own college studies a quarter-century earlier. And yet, Josh’s amorousness didn’t decrease a whit: his ardency with Candace seemed only the more intense; and when he was with Julie, both of them seemed to engage in almost frenetic sessions that (so far as Candace could gauge from the sounds emanating from Julie’s bedroom) involved his penetrating every orifice Julie had to offer.
Josh was, therefore, astounded when Candace calmly announced, in the middle of December: “Oh, by the way, my mother will be here for the holidays.”
He looked up from a mountain of books on canlı poker oyna the dining table. “Your mom! Where’s she coming from?”
“She lives in Auburndale.” That was a southern suburb of Boston, not all that far from Brookline.
“Auburndale!” Josh cried. “That’s really close!”
“It’s not that close.”
“It’s pretty close! Why haven’t you mentioned her? And why hasn’t she been over here before?”
“Oh,” Candace said with obvious insincerity, “she doesn’t want to interfere in our lives. That’s not the way she is.”
Julie, who had her own pile of books at the other end of the table, looked up sourly. “Oh, come on, Mom, tell the truth.”
In the deep silence that followed, Josh stared back and forth between his two lovers. “What’s going on?” he finally said to Candace. “Um, don’t you get along with her?”
“It’s not that at all,” Candace said. “We have a fine relationship.”
“Oh, Mom,” Julie said, exasperated, “just spill it.” Turning her attention to Josh: “Look, my grandmother—her name’s Mona—lost her husband about three years ago. They lived in this house for decades. I guess she decided that, once Frank had passed, the house had too many bad memories for her, so she moved to a little apartment in Auburndale and let Mom have the house for herself.”
“And I was living in a crappy little place in Waltham,” Candace added, “so I was happy to oblige. I had a great time in this house when I was a girl.”
“So . . . is that all?” Josh said.
“That’s all,” Candace said. “I guess Mother is still pretty shook up over Dad’s death.”
“But it was three years ago!”
“Yeah, but when you were married for forty-one years, three years isn’t a lot.”
“I guess it isn’t.”
“Look, she’s fine—but just don’t bring up the subject of her husband, okay? She’s still touchy about it.”
“Yes, ma’am,” Josh said. The last thing he wanted to do was to cause this old woman—for that’s how he thought of her—any additional pain.
But he couldn’t help wondering what sort of person Mona Sterling was. Was she more like her daughter (brash, bold, cynical, not suffering fools gladly) or her granddaughter (naïve, innocent, ingenuous)? Or was she altogether different from both?
He found out four days before Christmas. Both Josh and Julie had done pretty well in their exams, so they could focus on the holidays with a clear conscience. As the time arrived for Mona to show up, Josh was inexplicably nervous and jumpy. Had Mona even been informed of his presence in this house? The idea would presumably be to announce him as Julie’s boyfriend—for the idea of his sleeping with both mother and daughter was not likely to go over very well. Josh figured that, for the duration of Mona’s visit (she’d be staying a week or so), he’d have to practice forced monogamy with Julie, unless a chance somehow opened up to cuddle with Candace while the other two were away.
When Mona finally arrived, Josh did a double take.
She came in that afternoon bundled up in her heaviest winter coat, for the snow was coming down hard and the temperatures were only in the upper 20s. But as she removed that coat and received warm hugs from both her daughter and her granddaughter, Josh was able to get his first glimpse of this mysterious female.
It wasn’t merely that he liked what he saw; he was, frankly, amazed.
Mona Sterling was ravishingly beautiful, although not in any ordinary way. There was no question she was in her sixties; she no longer bothered to color her hair, and it was a brilliant white, impeccably styled to frame an oval face that radiated peace, tranquility, and more than a little melancholy. Josh’s heart was squeezed as he instantly saw how the loss of her longtime spouse had weighed on the sixty-six-year-old woman.
But, beyond a few crow’s feet around the corners of her eyes, her face was as unlined as a teenager’s, and its glowing pink skin radiated health and vigor. But it was the rest of her that caused Josh’s mouth to drop. A few inches shorter than her daughter, Mona was endowed with all the curves that drive men wild, even though she herself seemed blithely unaware of it; in particular, her angora sweater concealed a bosom that seemed nearly as expansive as Candace’s, and her strong thighs, tapered calves, and round bottom could have graced the body of a woman of Julie’s age.
Candace did indeed introduce Josh as “Julie’s boyfriend.” But as Josh stood there in the living room, gazing raptly at Mona as if hypnotized, Candace had to prod him. “Say hello to my mother, Mona, Josh.”
Mona had extended a hand, but in his agitation Josh rushed forward and took the woman in his arms and squeezed her hard. Mona actually let out a gasp of surprise, even of mild pain, but instinctively threw her arms around his neck.
“Josh!” Candace chided. “What do you think you’re doing? You’re crushing the life out of her!”
“Omigod, I’m sorry!” Josh cried, letting her go immediately and seemingly wanting to crawl under a table to hide.
“It’s all right, Candace,” internet casino Mona said with a soft smile, “no harm done.” With a twinkle in her eye, she said to Josh: “I haven’t had that kind of reception in a while.”
Josh could hardly speak; for his embrace had allowed him to get an initial feel of the contours of Mona’s body, and they were all he had thought they would be.
The awkward moment passed, as Candace led her mother into the kitchen, where a big meal was being prepared. Julie followed them, giving Josh a puzzled frown as she passed him. As the dinner progressed, Josh stumblingly asked his new source of fascination why she hadn’t come over for Thanksgiving, since she lived so close by. He hoped he wasn’t broaching some delicate subject, but Mona assured him that she felt obliged to spend time with an old friend (she had also lost her husband of long standing) down in Providence, R.I.
“So,” she went on, “you’re Julie’s boyfriend.”
“Yes, ma’am,” Josh said, suddenly coloring.
“And you . . . live here?”
“It’s only until he graduates in June,” Candace interceded. “I figured it would save time and effort, so that Julie doesn’t have to keep running over to Josh’s place for—well, you know.”
“I see,” Mona said blandly.
Julie visibly rolled her eyes and directed a venomous look to her mother. Great, Mom! Blame this on my unbridled lust!
“But Julie,” Mona pursued, “weren’t you living with someone else? Randy, or something like that?”
“Brandon,” Julie said with obvious distaste. “I dumped him. He was a scumbag.”
Mona was a little startled at her granddaughter’s vehemence. “I’m sure Josh is a much better . . . companion.”
That made Josh blush even more—something that Mona seemed to find charming, as she reached a hand over to his and stroked it. Looking at Josh but talking to Julie, she said, “Is he a bashful lover?”
“Bashful isn’t exactly the word I’d use for Josh,” Julie said pungently.
Mercifully, the conversation soon took a different turn, and the dinner proceeded amicably.
That evening, as Julie and Josh snuggled up together in her bedroom, she said, “What was the deal with you today? It was like you were squeezing poor Grandma to death.”
“I couldn’t help it!” Josh blurted out. “She’s so—beautiful.”
Julie gazed at him in wonder. “My grandmother is beautiful,” she said slowly and precisely. “Are you kidding me?”
“Well, isn’t she?”
“I’m certainly not a guy, but it would never have occurred to me to think so. And correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe she’s forty-five years older than you.”
“What difference does that make?” Josh said aggressively.
“Oh, come on! For guys of our generation, women of my grandmother’s age are pretty much invisible.”
“She’s pretty visible to me!”
Julie looked at Josh as if he were a creature from outer space. “You’re telling me you—you have the hots for my grandmother?” She let out a trilling, high-pitched laugh.
“So what if I do?”
“Oh, you got to be kidding me! You’re telling me you want to fuck her?”
“Jesus, will you stop using that kind of language? I think I want to wash your mouth out with soap.”
“You try it, buster!” Julie said, channeling a bit of her mother’s ferocity.
“Look, no one said anything about—about sleeping with her. I just think she’s really nice to look at. And she also seems like a super-nice person.”
“You hardly know her!”
“Well, I hope to change that.”
With the passing of days, Josh did exactly that. Without being overly obtrusive about it, he spent as much time with Mona as possible, talking to her about his own life and venturing delicately to solicit information about her own. Heeding Candace’s admonition not to bring up her dead husband, Frank, he probed about Mona’s college life (she had gone to Boston College, graduating with a degree in English), her career (she had spent many years at her alma mater in various capacities, including a long stint as executive secretary to the president), her travels, and so on.
Mona took the questioning well, even if she was a little bemused at the thought of this healthy, vigorous young man following her around the house like a puppy. Like her granddaughter, she had assumed that she was pretty much invisible to men of Josh’s age—and was more flattered than she realized when she found out that, at least in this one instance, she was wrong.
Perhaps that was why, when Candace announced on Christmas Eve that she was going to a tree farm quite a distance from the house to pick up a Christmas tree and asked who wanted to go along, Julie chimed in with a “I do!” but Josh and Mona demurred.
“Okay, it’s your lookout,” Candace said. She had not paid much attention to Josh’s taking such a shine to her mother, so she thought nothing of their wanting to stay at home together.
Josh did observe, however, that Mona seemed a bit on edge when she was left alone with him. In fact, at one point he found her sitting on the sofa in the living room, staring off into space with a strange, alarmed look on her face. He hoped she wasn’t dwelling too much on the past. He hated to see her unhappy, and so he sat down next to her and blurted out:
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