Unleashed Desires, Ageless Passions Ch. 03

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I had three telephone calls that night.

After I got back from Rosie’s house, I felt flat and empty. It was like a mood swing. At Rosie’s I had felt optimism, euphoria and no inhibitions. Was I sliding towards that romantic state of falling in love with her? I thought about that.

The psychologist in me took over. The feelings that I had were well known symptoms of becoming manic. Falling in love and mania have a lot in common, I thought. Maybe I just had an exhilaration hangover, like an adrenalin come-down.

You cranky shrink-wrap, I thought. What next? What would my textbook say? I picked up a big dusty volume that I had used to study at the Institute of Psychotherapy and flicked through it to find ‘hypomania’: The mild version of the manic condition- Diagnosis, treatment, general advice for sufferers.

I skipped through the general advice for sufferers, the first words leapt from the page. They read: ‘First and foremost, be true to yourself.’

I heard Rosie’s words from earlier sound inside my head.

She had said, “Which is worse committing ‘marital infidelity’ as you put it, or being unfaithful or untrue to yourself?”

First and foremost, be true to yourself. My mind was whirring through rapid thoughts. (Rapid thoughts are another symptom of mania.) I knew I was fine. My stomach was gurgling like a geyser about to erupt. I needed to eat. I turned on the oven and got out another packet meal and poured myself a large glass of red wine.

It was then that the phone rang for the first time. It was Jane.

The conversation started innocently enough.

Then she asked, “How’s the search for work going? Are you doing okay?”

I talked about my progress. I had made a lot of progress and my consulting work pipeline was bursting. It was as much as I could do to keep on top of all my prospective clients.

The conversation took a sudden turn.

“And how’s the girlfriend? Is she thriving too?” she asked.

“Girlfriend? What girlfriend?” I asked.

“You know the one that sends you sexy emails like ‘Where’s my birthday present big boy? When are you going to give it to me?” she said angrily.

“Where on earth did you get that from?” I asked.

“I was looking at your Broadnet e-mail account earlier just to get an idea of what you were up to. I came across it there, it was unsigned but from [email protected],” she said angrily.

“And there’s a whole chain of messages and a lot from you too,” she said.

As she talked I turned on the computer and loaded my mail program. In the search box I typed the e-mail address, ‘[email protected].’

Jane was ranting, spitting venom down the phone.

“So now I know why I’m not there. You’re getting what you need elsewhere and you don’t need me anymore, you cheating bastard!” she shouted.

The computer listed all the emails from and to [email protected] and I highlighted one with the subject line ‘It’s my birthday!’ That was obvious enough. I remembered. The notes were from Adrian, the male transport coordinator, at one of my government clients. He was inclined to go in for camp, off-the-wall humour. On this occasion, I had camped it up with him and sent him back some messages in the same vein.

“Am I your wife or aren’t I, you shit? No wonder, it’s taking you so darned long to sort things out in the UK. It’s because you are having a fuck fest!” she screamed.

“Look, Jane. I think you ought to stop. Those notes were from a male colleague at a client. It’s just English humour, I guess. It’s sometimes more bizarre, wacky and less obvious than its American counterpart, just like Monty Python,” I said.

With both Americans and Britons, it’s often a case of ‘one strike and you’re out,’ one sniff of infidelity and it’s over, I thought. I remembered reading about a recent Gallup Poll that found that Americans are more tolerant of polygamy and cloning, than they are of infidelity.

“Don’t give me those lies, you two-timing shit! Don’t think I don’t know what you are up to!” Jane ranted.

“Okay, I am going to say it one more time. Those e-mail messages are just banter between two men who aren’t fucking each other. The man who wrote them is called Adrian and if you’re so suspicious, there’s a cell phone number on one of his notes. Why don’t you call him up with your preposterous allegations and ask if I’m having an affair with him? Then you can look as stupid as you sound right now,” I said. “And another thing, why were you snooping through my e-mail accounts?”

“I knew you were up to something and I know I’m right too,” she said.

“What I’m up to is working my nuts off to get work. You’re completely wrong and you’ve got a problem. What’s obvious to me now is that you’re suspicious and you don’t trust me. What’s worse is that it shows what a bad state we are in,” I said. “So what’s the next step?”

Most of what I was saying was true but only if I ignored the events of the last twenty-four hours.

“I just don’t know how we can resolve this. I just know there’s someone else and that there has been for a very long time now, Betturkey since you’ve been in England. I just know it,” she said.

“So I’ll ask again, what’s the next step? How do you get your resolution?” I asked. “How do you resolve something that isn’t real? I don’t know the answer to that.”

“Oh you tricky bastard!” she shouted and with a resounding crash slammed down the phone.

The oven was smoking. My instant meal packet was now a burnt offering, its contents close to charcoal. I turned off the oven and went back to the computer.

I had a large e-mail account and I had kept copy messages at my Internet Service Provider for backup. I went back to the Broadnet account, selected all the messages and chose ‘delete’. The messages flickered then disappeared. I had a backup on an external hard disk drive in any event, keeping a third copy was belt and braces.

After that I went through every single internet account I had including my bank account and changed the security passwords on all of them. I chose new passwords, just random groups of letters and numbers that no-one could guess by association.

I really must eat, I thought. I made a cheese and ham sandwich and sat down to eat it as the phone rang once more. It was Jane again.

“Look, I just went back to your e-mail account to check what I had read, to make absolutely sure and I can’t get into it anymore,” she said.

“No, I deleted all those messages and changed the passwords too,” I replied.

“Destroying the evidence, eh! So now you’re trying to cover up what’s going on, to hide it from me,” she said.

“No, there’s no hiding anything. If you want to know something just ask and I’ll tell you. You’ve got a problem, Jane. This stuff is all coming from you and it makes me wonder,” I said. “In England, there’s this schoolboy saying about farting. It goes: ‘He who smelt it, dealt it’ and it means the person who made the bad stink smells it first. So before you go sounding off at me, I’d take a very long look at what’s going on with you.”

“You’re such a smart ass, a real clever dick!” she said. “So now I have to think about farting, is that it?”

“Jane, you’re wearing me down with your mindless drivel. I’m going to put down the phone now and if the caller id shows up ‘international’ again tonight, I’m not going to answer it. I’ve had enough of this for tonight. I may have had enough full stop,” I said.

After I finished speaking all I could hear was the sound of Jane’s angry staccato breathing. I pressed the ‘end call’ button and heaved a sigh of relief.

I went through to the sitting room with its low-beamed ceilings and sank into my favourite armchair still holding the phone. Quickly I devoured my tasteless sandwich. I thought I’d play some music, some opera, something to take me to another place. I chose ‘Le Nozze di Figaro’ by Mozart. That would do it, I thought.

It was then the phone rang for a third time that night. I squinted at the caller id. It was a local number that I’d seen earlier that night scribbled on a piece of paper. It was Rosie’s number.

I answered the phone, “Is that the ghost of Christmas future?”

“What are you talking about, you daft man?” Rosie said and giggled.

Just to hear those friendly tones again brought a smile to my face.

“Well, I’ve already had a visit from the ghosts of Christmas past and Christmas present tonight. So I thought you must be the ghost of Christmas to come,” I said.

I went on to tell her all about the phone calls from Jane.

“Phew! That’s some anger. It sounds to me like she needs a therapist,” Rosie said.

“There are only two therapists I know. She’s married to one of them and you’re the other,” I replied. “What’s so unnerving is that in a way, she’s right. All the details are wrong, but last night and today, I did cheat on her.”

“It’s convenient for me say her facts are wrong. But that’s not the point, is it?”

“Look, John, she took off on this course long before last night. She’s not telepathic and you’ve got a problem facing you now that is not about this weekend, but about you and her together,” she said.

“Something I don’t understand though is this phased move back to the UK thing,” Rosie said. “If you were really committed to each other, you could have made the money work. You could have sold something; she could have got a job doing temporary work. You could have done some part-time therapy. There are so many ways that you could have got through this and done it together. So why do it this way and why do you have to take all the responsibility for making it work?”

“It’s complicated and I’ll try and answer both questions,” I said. “When we were living in the United States, Jane’s UK visa ran out and she forgot to renew it. Maybe that was a Freudian slip of sorts. But it means that we have to apply for her visa all over again. The Government application requires that I prove that I am able to provide accommodation and support us both financially without recourse to State benefits. I have to show that I’m working and earning money. Betturkey Giriş That’s the first part and it’s mainly about jumping through hoops of government bureaucracy.

“The second part is more difficult. Jane is an attractive woman in many ways, but she is obsessive and probably has very low self-esteem. She would deny both of those by the way.

“But like a lot of people with low self esteem, she’s dependent in her outlook and doesn’t take responsibility. When things go wrong she looks for someone to blame. It’s like life is something that is done to her and she’s its victim. Even sex is something that’s performed by me and done to her. I’ve come to the conclusion that almost everything is like that for her. So if we hit any small problem, I carry the can for things going wrong and the responsibility for putting them right. That way she exonerates herself from both responsibility and blame. What that means is we do virtually nothing together and certainly don’t face or deal with any difficulties as a couple.”

Rosie listened quietly.

“Also I get the blame hurled at me just because she feels bad. She’ll even dream up some nightmare fantasy to justify doing it. And that’s what’s happening now. Life isn’t exactly as she wants it so I must be doing something wrong. That something wrong is my having an affair since I arrived in England. Its’ not true, but her invention is a way of dealing with her own dreadful feelings of unease…of making herself feel better in a perverse way,” I said. “Oh Rosie! I could go on and give you the full nine yards but it’s just not fair on you.”

“But finish that thought, John,” Rosie said, “and don’t worry about me, my love. I’m a good listener, so good I do it professionally!”

“Rosie, you are lovely,” I said, “but I don’t want you as my therapist. I want you as my lover, my friend and my soul-mate. It’s difficult…”

“And John, I want the same of you too,” she replied. “It’s okay. Just finish your thoughts, I’ll listen.”

“Okay, I’ll just do shorthand now,” I said. “We both know the theory and we can fill in the gaps.

“If one has a personality that doesn’t take responsibility, one does blame. It’s always someone else’s fault. Blame and intimacy do not cohabit well at all. Blame and power go hand-in-hand. A powerful response is often a destructive response. It’s like infantile omnipotence and that’s very scary in an adult. Blame achieves nothing but its ultimate expression is destructiveness. If you add low self-esteem into the pot, then the destructiveness matters less since as one cannot care for oneself, it’s difficult to care for or love others either. That’s it…some of it, at least, in a nutshell and that’s a little of what I’m wrestling with now.”

“Blimey, I’m sorry for going on! That’s just some of the edited highlights by the way!” I added.

“No worries, my love. I do understand,” Rosie said. “Look do you want me to come round? All I need to do is to sling on a sweater, brush my teeth and hey presto, I could be there in minutes.”

I looked at my watch. It was coming up to eleven o’clock.

“When do you think you might be going to bed, Rosie?” I asked. “The reason I asked is that I probably need a little time just to process and despatch all these thoughts or they’ll keep me awake all night.”

“Not for a couple of hours yet. We slept half the day and I don’t feel ready for bed yet,” she said.

“Me neither,” I replied. “I would like to sleep with you. The emphasis is on the word sleep though. I don’t think I could manage any more passion just for the moment. But I really would like to be with you tonight. You have soothed my troubled brow, as they say. May I call you when I feel human again? In the meantime, I think I may well go and take a good long soak in the bath.”

“Of course, you may. Sleeping with you, just resting together, would be perfect. Then tomorrow morning, I want to make love to you and I mean make love to you this time,” Rosie said.

“Mmm I can’t wait,” I replied.

We said our warm farewells then I wandered upstairs to run a hot steaming, foaming bath. I lay in the bath daydreaming mainly of Rosie. I basked in the better memories of the day. Just talking with Rosie had restored my sanity. I felt relaxed and calm. I would call her soon. I caught a view of myself in the mirror and remembered that I needed to scrape the stubble from my face. I shaved quickly taking care not to cut my throat with my safety razor. Many a morning after a hasty and clumsy start I had to delay getting ready to give my shaving wounds time to stop bleeding.

I put on an oversize thick towelling bathrobe and wandered downstairs. Quickly I went round the farmhouse picking things up from the floor and slinging them into cupboards. I picked the phone up from the floor and dialled Rosie’s number.

“I’ll be there in five minutes. I’m ready to leave now,” Rosie answered.

“Are you sure about walking down the lane alone at this time of night?” I asked. “I can come and pick you up if you want.”

“John, the last time we had a crime in this small hamlet was about ten years ago and that was a drunken brawl in the village pub as I remember. I’ll be just fine and I’ll see you very soon,” she said.

I put the front door on the latch and lit scented candles in the bedroom and the sitting room.

“Knock, knock!” said Rosie, peering round the door.

She was dressed for a walk on a cold summer’s night. I was dressed ready for bed.

“Come in, Rosie,” I said and smiled. “It’s so good to see you again. Do come through and can I get you a drink?”

“It’s great to see you too. Do you have any Scotch? I’d love one of those,” Rosie said.

“For whisky, I can offer you a choice. I have blended or single malt. There’s Johnnie Walker Black Label as blended, or Springbank, Laphroaig or Macallan in the malts. What would you like?” I asked.

“That’s a very good choice. Please may I have a small Springbank, John,” Rosie replied.

As I poured, I noticed Rosie wander around the small ground floor surveying the place for character clues. She wandered back into the kitchen and I handed her a cut-glass tumbler.

“Would you like some water in it? I have some spring water in the fridge if you would like that,” I said.

“It’s okay, I’ll get it,” Said Rosie.

We smiled, as we both knew this was simply an excuse and opportunity for Rosie to check out the contents of my refrigerator. She took out the dark blue glass bottle of still mineral water and splashed a few drops in her glass. She put the bottle back looking up and down the fridge. Had I asked her next what she had seen, she would have probably been able to describe the entirety of its contents, just like Kim’s game.

“Come through to the sitting room,” I said. “Let me take your glass.”

The chivalry was just a ploy. I put down the glasses side by side on a small wooden table by the battered dark brown leather couch. I took Rosie in my arms and held her very close.

I bent to kiss Rosie and she raised her lips to meet mine. If kisses could only talk, this kiss might have spoken acceptance, relief, pleasure, appreciation, warmth, tenderness, kindness and love. It was a long loving kiss with small but potent traces of desire and passion. Our tongues met each other as if we had known each other for more than a lifetime. They danced one on the other, stroking, gliding, caressing in their gentle pleasure. The kiss was long and lingering, soothing and serene. Rosie understood the meaning and vocabulary of the kiss and she was bringing me calmness and tranquillity. We both knew that our kiss was a disguise of the moment; that underneath its tranquillity burnt the yearning of primeval desire and passions deep in our souls. It was bliss.

As I pulled gently away from our kiss, a storm of anxiety about Jane hit me like a plague of locusts.

“Wow. I felt that! That whole burst of thoughts and tension in you just then,” said Rosie. “How are you feeling? Are you okay?”

“Yes, I’m okay Rosie. I’m very okay with you,” I said. “How I feel is like James Bond’s Martini, ‘shaken but not stirred.’ To be truthful, I feel a bit beaten up.

“But I love being with you for who and what you are. What I really don’t want to happen is to become one of those wet male puppy dog types, the sort that cheats because he says he wants love as his wife doesn’t understand him. That’s just pathetic.”

“I understand. I know how you feel too. It’s okay, my love,” she said. “Do you believe in synchronicity, by the way?”

“We must go to bed soon is what I think,” I said, “and my feelings about synchronicity are complicated. I suppose what I believe is that we seek to understand our world in terms of cause and effect. I don’t believe that everything can be explained in those rational and scientific terms. The problem with synchronicity, of the idea of meaningful coincidence, is that it is susceptible to so much mystical jiggery-pokery on the one hand and ideas about fatalism and divinity on the other. Then there are difficulties about psychic perception, interpretation and the subjective correspondence of events. So that’s my complicated answer.

“So as I said just now, let’s go to bed. And if synchronicity is what brings you and me together, then I’m full of contradictions and this is the most magical coincidence of all.”

I smiled at Rosie who was wearing one of those quizzical expressions on her face.

“Oh I do like you so much, John. In the morning I shall show you how much. Take me to bed now,” she said.

I kissed Rosie softly on the forehead and led her upstairs. I thought as we climbed the stairs about our knowing each other for so short a time. It was less than twenty-four hours since we had first let go in the joyous abandonment of our fucking.

Rosie undressed as quickly as I had on the night before. I watched her as she shed her few clothes. If last night I thought she was old, then tonight I thought she was no age at all. I had lost any sense of the age difference between us. Rosie was twenty years older than Jane, my wife. In her feelings and her vitality it was as if Rosie was the much younger of the two women. Rosie had reached that point in her being where her inner child was running free; loving, caring and loved. She jumped into my king-sized bed and hugged the duvet to her.

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