Friday evening 8 PM came way too fast for Ethan.
Up until the very last minute he had been pondering believable excuses. Unfortunately, nothing that he could get past his sister came to mind.
Not worth chancing having Ezzy mad at him now too.
So he went.
Sitting at the new, fancy club in San Myshuno now after meeting up at Ezzy and Nick’s place first, he just wished himself away.
He was not feeling the double date, even though Ezzy’s friend seemed nice enough, who was introduced to him as Daphne something unpronounceable for a last name that sounded as foreign as her thick accent.
Very tall. Almost as tall as Nick and him.
Maybe a little too confident for Ethan’s taste, he felt overwhelmed by her temperament, outgoing ways and her loud voice.
Shy she was not.
After a few drinks Nick, Ezzy and Daphne decided to go dancing.
Ethan went to sit in a comfortable corner to hide away and observe.
Daphne came over first, joining Ethan again at the table.
“Ethan, I want tell you, I didn’t know she planned blind date. I thought I was just going to her house, to look it and to talk. I didn’t learn about you until I was already there.”
“Oh, yeah, sounds like Ezzy, no it’s fine. I am enjoying this.” Ethan told her.
“Yeah, sure.” she called his bluff.
“I am just tired. Please do not take it personal. Just hasn’t been my day. Or week. Or month.”
“I see. My month been bad too. Maybe that is why Ezzy thought we should meet. You know, how do they say? Ah, misery loves company.”
Ethan really wasn’t in the mood to listen to someone else’s drama, but in an effort to be polite he asked anyway.
“Problems at work?”
“Yeah and – how do you say – gamoto mou! (cursing) I think I forgot all English while back home! My English was never good to begin with, now it’s – how do you say – it’s shit. Yes, shit is what it is.”
“I hope this is not rude, but your slight accent … where are you from, originally?” Ethan tried to make small talk.
“Slight? You are sweet. Accent is big as my yiayia’s (grandma) butt. I am Greek. Moved here when I was 17. My English’s about as good as a 7 dollar bill, but now, I live back home for 4 years, and now – bada-boom – English’s completely gone now!” she gestured wildly as seemed to be her way.
“It’s really not that bad. It sounds …. exotic.” Ethan tried to compliment her.
“Exotic? Greece? I can tell you never been. I am from Thessaloniki, big city, like all big cities. Not exotic. Chaotic. Rude people in a hurry, shitty traffic, crowds, but good clubs and shopping. And the food. Hmm-hmm. Weather is much better too. People are more relaxed.”
“Did you move to San Myshuno then?”
“Too expensive. Hotel right now. Looking for home at good price where ever I can find. I don’t care what town. Good looking home. I have realtor, but they only show me trash or too expensive. Maybe my accent is to blame. I may live on street soon! There is one house I go look tomorrow with realtor, pictures good, modern. In Willow Creek. From pictures, I liked best.”
“Of course you did.” Did everybody suddenly live in or was about to live in Willow Creek?!
“Why? Willow Creek no good? Looks good, but a bit … old. Like, for old people. I did internet search.”
“It’s a bit …. rustic and traditional. Has some great architecture. More modern than Windenburg though.”
“Oh yes, you are architect. I may use you – hire service. Maybe I want to build home. But not Willow Creek. Somewhere with life. You know good place?”
“There are several properties available in Oasis Springs, quite a drive to San Myshuno but the weather is usually good there because of the mountains. And then there is also Newcrest, one of the newer developments in the region and therefore more modern and they have a large Italian community, not sure if that helps someone with Greek background.”
“Italian community? Greek background? Huh? You mean just because we have similar complexion, makes us instant friends? Oxi! (No!) But if you say Oasis Springs and Newcrest good, I believe you. You are expert. So how do you do the architect thing. Do I come to your office and you help me find place to put house and then draw house or do I have to find property, then you draw house? Do you build or do I have to find person?”
“Normally clients already have property and an idea what they want on it, but we work with many realtors and I am sure I can help you find something suitable to your needs and budget. And we work with builders to get whatever you decide on from draft to reality. I am definitely available to help.” Ethan couldn’t help the almost sales pitch.
“Oh, I like you to help me with my … needs.” she winked at him and Ethan blushed deeply.
Was she hitting on him or was he imagining things?
There were a few more times where he could have sworn she was hitting on him. A comment, a look, a touch.
A racy, worldly woman like her? Didn’t Blythe call him a baby-faced high school kid, basically?
Why would a woman of Daphne’s caliber want him then?
Not like he was wealthy, which she would be aware of since she knew Ezzy.
His question was answered when he offered to drive her back to her hotel, out of courtesy.
She accepted right away and went with him to his car.
Once at the hotel she told him
“You park, I want to show you something, Ethan. In my room.” she gave him a certain look.
“Uh – I don’t know.” Ethan stuttered nervously.
“No need to know. I know. And I am telling you. Go park, and come.”
Flabbergasted he did, wondering the entire way up to her room what the heck he was doing.
When she shut the door behind them, he looked around the room. What would she want to show him other than … he heard the door lock.
Ethan’s eyes grew big when he looked at her again.
She was suddenly naked, the silky dress pooling at her feet as she kicked off her heels.
“Ummmmm….” Ethan turned a deep shade of red while smiling like a fool. Uh oh!
“You no like?” she purred as she came closer.
“Oh, I like …I mean you are beautiful, but I … we… ummm… my child ….”
“I don’t see child. Just man and woman. Do you remember how much fun that can be?” she was now very close, he could feel the warmth of her body, mixed with the warm undertone of her exotic perfume, intoxicating him.
That and the touch of her hands, well placed and pushing all the right buttons for him, clouded his mind.
“I think I should go.” he tried with a last bit of clarity.
“I think you should stay.” she breathed into his ear, before kissing him.
“I … umm ….” he was muzzled by her kiss, which he now returned.
He could neither move nor speak, especially after she pressed herself up against him, kissing him, trailing kissed down his face and neck, unbuttoning his shirt.
His body was reacting, as he was sure she could feel, as close as she was, still pressed up against him.
She began to unbutton his pants and he could not move or protest.
The rest happened in a blur.
Ethan would have to lie if he were to say he didn’t thoroughly enjoy her ‘treatment’.
Laying next to each other, breathless, very relaxed and tingly all over, he was wondering about repercussions this could have as he drifted off to an exhausted sleep.
When he woke up the clock radio by the bed read almost 3 AM.
That same day Amy was going to come over later in the afternoon to see Blake for the first time in almost 2 years!
And he wasn’t even home. He was … where was he again?!
It took him a moment to get his bearings about him, initially surprised to realize that he was still entangled with another person, naked. Daphne’s breath was low and even, suggeting she was asleep.
Damn! Ethan thought. That really did happen. Uh oh.
She was Ezzy’s friend, so his sister might find out about this. Not might, would.
A potential client. Unless she was just talking herself into his pants.
“Oh shit! I have to go!” Ethan exclaimed, waking Daphne up as he pulled away from her, who watched him drowsily as he jumped up getting dressed fast.
“Re, omorfos mou (handsome), you have time for shower. With me?” Daphne purred.
“I … really have to go.”
“No. Shower first, live civilized people. Come. I will help you…” she rose up out of bed and pulled him along with her towards the bathroom, stopping to make out along the way.
Like a marionette without a mind of his own, Ethan went along, the clothing he just put on came right back off.
It was another intense, breathtaking time and he felt more like a nap than a long drive home after their ‘shower’, while he was drying off, catching glimpses of her rubbing body oil into her bronzy skin.
Definitely the kind of woman a man wants that kind of attention from and then flaunt the memory to all his buddies.
Oddly, Ethan didn’t feel that way.
As hot as the imagination of a one-night stand with a sexy stranger was, somehow it didn’t sit well with him. Maybe all the rough news of the past weeks made him melancholic or depressed.
And it was not like he would never see her again. Ez knew her and she was going to live in the area. They would meet again. It was unavoidable.
Ethan got dressed in record speed, then rushed out of the hotel as if the devil himself were after him.
Watching TV in the evening of that same day Ethan was startled by a knock on the door.
When he answered it was Nick.
“Hey, how’s it hanging?” Nick said as he walked inside past Ethan unasked.
“Don’t even get me started …” Ethan replied following his friend into the living room.
“But I am gonna ask. That is why I am here. You are so illusive, dude. We used to hang a lot, now I need to look at pictures to remember what you look like. And we used to talk about shit. Now it’s like I barely even know you anymore.” Nick bro-hugged Ethan.
“It’s called a job and being a single dad, Nick. Not exactly my first choice either.”
“Wow, going right for the sucker punch into the balls, huh? Down boy, I come in peace.”
“Sorry Nick. Want a beer?”
“Sure. So, how did the date go?”
“You really think I believe for one micro-second that you dropped Miss Greece off and went home like a good boy? HA!? Not in a million years! The way she was kama-sutra’ing you with her eyes all night …”
“Not just with her eyes …”
“Oooh juicy stuff! I KNEW it! So you did hit the jackpot! Congrats man and welcome back to life! I do hope though you had enough blood left in the big head to remember to use protection?” Nick’s expression was serious at the last part.
“Yes, dad, we used protection every single time. For my own sake. The very last thing I need is another kid right now. As far as back to life … I don’t really feel very alive. More like … dirty. Maybe that is not the right word. I have serious remorse here. Not sure why, but something isn’t sitting right with me. I don’t think this is my kinda thing.”
“That is every straight dude’s kinda thing! Correction: every single straight dude. And did I hear that right, did you imply you did the mattress mambo several times? Damn boy, proud of you! I thought that Daphne definitely has some fire under her hood! Surprised you are able to walk upright.”
“Yeah, she is very … passionate.”
“But the wrong girl.”
“You are not STILL pining after Amy, right? Come on now!”
“Nope, I am done with Amy for good. She came by the office the other day, to gloat about her new husband. And wanting to see Blake. Incidentally today. She left a few hours ago.”
“How did that go?”
“Awkward. Blake just kept staring at her. That whole mommy thing just wouldn’t compute with him. He almost looked scared of her.”
“Yeah, she was pretty down about that.”
“YOU SAW AMY? What the fuck, man?!”
“Relax, she came for a visit since she was already in this neck of the woods. We all are friends, remember? She came to see Ezzy, meet Ally and well … hang with me, too, I guess. We all have been friends forever, whether you are married or not, we are friends.”
“Fantastic. She is weaseling her way back into every aspect of my life. She was a great friend to you and Ez the past two years, right?” Ethan’s tone changed to cynic.
“Ethan, dude, come on. And yeah, she was at least for some of that time. She and you basically raised my daughter when Ezzy and I couldn’t. Maybe that is even the reason why you broke up. Either way, Amy fucked up and she knows it. Damage is done. She’s not an evil monster, but a good person who messed up. I messed up too and was forgiven. She wants to see her friends and her son. It’s her right.”
“That’s where you are wrong. She waived all that when she had her little meltdown, before leaving all of us in the dust.”
“And as an attorney I can assure you that she still has rights, all things considered. If she really wanted to stir up shit, she could challenge that old arrangement. Since family court will always consider what is best for the child, not ex-spouses who may be sore with one another, I guarantee you, she would at least get frequent visitation.”
“Great, Matlock. Who’s side are you even on?”
“Yours, dumbass, always yours. But why do you have so much sand in your vajayjay? After last night you should be doing cartwheels.”
“Well, I am not. I don’t want casual fucking, I want someone by my side in times like now. That’s where it really counts.”
“Want me to snuggle you and kiss your forehead?”
“If you no longer want front teeth.”
“As if I couldn’t mop the floors with your skinny ass.”
“Yeah, about that, can you give me some pointers on how to buff up some.”
“Buff up? Just to polish my visage?”
“No. I am tired of looking like a high school kid. I want to be more … masculine. Buff. Stronger. Manlier.”
“Did Miss Greece launch some serious complaints? Strange, she seemed to really like what she saw.”
“SHE didn’t complain.”
“Oh, now I get it! Wow, I am slow! Duh! There is someone else. Oh my f-ing God, that is why all that ‘overtime‘ … oops…” Nick said, overenunciating the word.
“They will kill me and my big mouth!”
“I will kill you and your mouth! Spill!”
“Well, you called your dad about overtime a few times. Once your mother called him looking for you and he told her you were working overtime. She went to your office and guess what? Nobody home. Still, you came home talking about overtime when you picked up your kid. So … they know. We all know. Just didn’t want you to feel … exposed.”
“What the fuck?! Am I on some reality TV show now?”
“Well, did you or didn’t you go on dates?”
“Fine, I know telling you is a mistake, you walking talking newsletter, might as well call a Cameron family meeting for this, but yeah, there is someone. Was. I kinda like her, but she does not like me back. At least not like … that. Not her type. Too skinny and babyfaced is what I was told. After she shut me down when I tried to kiss her.”
“Ouch. But that shouldn’t deter you if you really like her and think she likes you too.”
“Yes, it should deter me or else it would be called stalking.”
“No, it’s called perserverance. Without it, I would never be married to your sister. I struck out so many times with that girl … and I was shut down for kisses several times. Did I run home and curl up in a ball sucking my thumb? You betcha. But I persisted and went back in. And I prevailed. Take notice. I rest my case. Always wanted to say that. Oddly, you never actually use that phrase in real life court. Bummer.”
“That’s different. Ezzy had issues. She always hat the hots for you. Bugged the shit out of me back then…well, kinda still does, even though I am happy you are happy and she is happy. Even if that means you two are happy together and I have to witness your PDA and hear things that make me want to stab pens in my ears.”
“So, are you so certain that the object of your affections does NOT have issues like your sister did?”
“Yes .. no .. well .. I guess she had some crappy break-up with a cheating boyfriend, who dumped her, kicked her out pregnant, she had a miscarriage and … oh my fucking God, you are right! And I am a moron!”
“Nah, you are an adorable baby-faced skinny kid.”
“Fuck you, Nick!”
“Thanks for the offer, but you’re not my type. I also stay away from hussies who have wild one night stands with people they just met. And I much rather do all those naughty things with your SISTER.”
“You are really trying to get a beating. I still don’t want to hear that!”
“Dude, Ez and I have a kid. Wouldn’t that be a dead giveaway that we do stuff in the bedroom. And in many other places to be exact.”
“Nasty! You are disgusting!”
“Yeah yeah yeah, little Ethan thinks his sister and I do nothing but hold hands all day and night, after he himself just banged some hot Greek chick all over some hotel room all night. Got it. Sure. As for your other problem, I am actually job hunting again, so don’t have so much time to train with you several times a week, but can give you some pointers how to get bigger. Or you can go get you some personal trainer at a gym near your work and go on your lunch break, so you don’t have to juggle Blake after work.”
“Yeah, there is a pretty new place just 10 minutes or so away. I’ll do that. Sign up and become a real man.”
“I really hope that girl is worth is, cos she sure put a huge dent in your ego! For what it’s worth, you are pretty bad ass already in my book. But if working out ups your confidence, go for it man. Helps relief stress and anger, too, so win-win right?”