Victor didn’t know how long he could hold out—it felt too good and it had been a while—but then Violet’s breathing turned quick and shallow. He felt her quiver and that was his undoing. He let out an explosive grunt just as she gasped and said, “Oh, my!” and collapsed on top of him, breathing hard.
She lay there spent and exhausted for several seconds. She then wrapped her arms around his neck and kissed him.
“Last wish granted. Thank you, Mr. Genie,” she whispered in his ear, giggling like a school girl.
“No, Violet, thank you,” he said holding her tightly against him. He could feel her quickened heart beat slow to a normal speed. He felt the slick sheen of perspiration on her over heated skin, and her tussled hair tickled his face. This was it. This is what he’d been craving all these years.His heart swelled with love.
“I love you, my funny girl.”
She kissed him slowly then snuggled into him laying her head on his chest. “I love you…Victor,” she mumbled. She then made a soft sound like the coo of a dove just before falling blissfully asleep.
Victor’s heart skipped a beat. Stunned beyond reason, he lay listening to her steady breathing. He had trouble believing what he just heard. Could it truly be she knew it was him all along and not her ghost husband? Had she been awake then? Or was this sleep walking… without the walking?
These thoughts didn’t over shadow one pertinent bit of information. He was rather certain he had just been raped. Oddly enough, he wasn’t too fussed about it.
He suppressed a laugh for fear of awakening her and eventually he fell asleep, too, with a great big smile on his face.
* * * * * * *
“What…what just happened?” Richard asked, clutching at his pained heart as he stared at Violet comfortably sleeping on top of Victor.
“I don’t think I really need to tell you that, dear, surely,” Heidi replied in a gentle, compassionate voice.
“But…but this has never happened before…not when…”
“You know that’s not exactly true, Richard,” she said, placing her hand on his arm.
He turned away from the sight and sat down on the edge of the bed, his legs too weak to hold him.
“But why? I don’t understand it. Why couldn’t she see me this time? I was right there between them and she didn’t even notice me.”
Heidi sighed. “Oh, Richard, I’ve already explained this. The living only see or hear us when they wish to.”
“And how could she just…She just…she picked him over me.”
“The living always choose the living over the dead… eventually,” she said.
“So, that’s it? I’m nothing to her anymore? I guess I should leave then.”
“Not at all. She still needs you, so you must stay,” Heidi said, also sitting at the foot of the bed beside him.
“What for? She’s got him!” Richard shouted pointing behind him.
“Does she though? She's still clinging to you. Recall that she spoke your name first.”
“Yeah, but she knew it wasn’t me.”
“Listen to me, Dear. Violet doesn’t even know this happened at all, so she can’t really know with whom...”
“What are you talking about? Course she knows!”
Heidi shook her head. “Do you know how some people walk and talk in their sleep, some even eat and drive? Well, Violet… ur…she does that in her sleep. You should know better than anyone.”
Richard sat up straight recalling quite clearly that Violet used to get very amorous in the middle of the night. He had always thought it rather funny and delighted in those times, but now he understood why she had always denied ever doing any such thing come morning. He had just thought she was fooling, but she must truly not have recalled ever doing it. How could that be?
“So, she…she doesn’t even know?”
Heidi shook her head. “She’ll be in for a surprise when she awakens in Victor’s arms, don’t you think?”
Richard grinned devilishly. Violet, he supposed and fervently hoped, would blow a gasket and accuse Victor of….
Suddenly, he couldn’t wait until morning.
* * * * *
The distant sound of a baby crying slightly roused Violet.
“Missy?” she muttered, before she recalled Missy and her mother Karen weren’t living with her anymore. Good, she thought. She didn’t want to get up just yet. She was too comfy-cozy nestled up against…
Richard? she thought. Even in her half sleep state, she knew that wasn’t right. He was dead, after all, but it surely wasn’t a pillow she was leaning against. She could distinctly feel a warm, hard body spooned with hers, steady breathing fanned the back of her neck and there was a large hand cupping one breast, one sans clothing—any clothing. She most certainly wasn’t imagining that!
Nearing panic, her eyes popped open, but looking around she saw nothing familiar. Where the heck was she? Looking out of the window she saw nothing but grey and rain slashing at the glass. It all came back to her then.
The storm. The lightning. Taking refuge in this cheap little hotel where the lights went out and…
None of that explained why she wasn’t wearing anything. She distinctly remembered putting on one of Victor’s shirts and…
She suddenly looked down at the hand clamped on her breast and sure enough, it was Victor’s hand, and it was Victor’s body pressed up against her back, and it was Victor’s breath on her neck. On top of all that, she could tell he wasn’t wearing anything either.
Holy-moly! What in the world was this? She wasn’t even on the same side of the bed she took the night before. How in the world had they switched?
She wracked her brain, but could think of no scenario in which this could happen unless…had Victor taken advantage of her last night? Surely not! She would have awakened for that. But then why were they in a most intimate position and dear Lord! What happened to her clothes?
Her heart pounded frantically in her chest. What should she do? Well, she knew one thing. She had to get dressed…if she could only find her clothes, that is. But first she wished to extract herself from this bed—and Victor’s firm grip-- without awakening him.
Ever so slowly she moved inch by inch away from the warm body directly behind her, hoping the arm would pull away on its own. No luck there. He didn’t seem inclined to relinquish his claim on her flesh. She then gently pried each finger—one by one—off her breast and eventually lifted the hand away from her and Victor shifted with a moan to lay on his back.
She held her breath and remained still as death for what seemed like a dozen years, until she was certain he was soundly sleeping. That’s when she slid off the bed, her feet landing on a shirt which could only be the one she put on the night before. She snatched it up off the floor and held it up to her naked body.
She rounded the bed all the while watching Victor’s sleeping form-- and a marvelous form that was. Sans any sheet, she could see him in all his glory- WOW! She had half a notion to drop the stupid shirt and crawl back to him, but thoughts of a scandal back home made her walk backwards to the bathroom with the shirt still covering her body, just in case he woke up suddenly. She wasn’t about to let anyone—especially not Victor-- see her naked. For heaven’s sake, she was no spring chick anymore!
What was it Richard used to say? “All downhill from age eighteen”.
Well, she could attest to that. She had been pregnant at age eighteen, after all, and you never get the body back after a baby or two. She glanced back at Victor and couldn’t truthfully say that applied to him.
“Some people have all the luck,” she muttered as she forced her eyes away from all that male beauty.
Once in the bathroom, she flicked the light stitch out of habit and found the lights did work. YAY!
She swiftly decided a shower was in order. She felt hot and sticky, which was odd since the air conditioning obviously must have come back on with the electricity. But it could be it only came back online recently. She shrugged and had been about to enter the shower when she spotted her bag, forced into a corner, way under the sink along with the clean towels.
How the heck they got there, she couldn’t imagine.