Thomas studied the reflection in the bathroom mirror until the illusion was clear. Neither version was in control.
The Cruise was a disaster of epic proportions; the first the CSWA wouldn’t survive. In eighteen years, the summer dream only a warehouse and a handful of people could see, has always shaken off the beatings. Through the years of neglect and mismanagement, it has suffered the pride and arrogance of its employees to be there when the Chiefs were bored with just playing Indians. Never a doubt one or the other, Merritt or Thomas, would come back.
Stephen set sail to escape the hungry, collective mouth he couldn’t feed even if he knew how. This was to be the Lady’s last voyage, oh, he knew it well, but not like this. Man or mouse, and to know the answer was hell. He wanted to do right by her. Gently let his love die then dine on the drunkenness of the last glory until he couldn’t remember how the story played out, until the myths and fabrications swelled to completely blur fact and fiction. Thomas sought redemption, but found vengeance. Maybe she let this happen. Dreamt of it as the box was shut, and her mercy and greatness ignored. The executioner, though, had no right to be Red.
Hundreds were hostages to a deranged midget, lost at sea, the company bleeding money. Thomas had finally awakened from the dream, but knew the hardened reality: the true horrors lay outside the bathroom door.
“Shoog, I’m ready.”
Hortense played because she was tired of being lonely, Thomas, for her, was power and money. The deal was, neither breath of desperation was to be said as a prayer. The Thomases were together, happy or otherwise. Not that it mattered. But trapped by a midget, the family business riddled with bullets, women tend to want everything. Say you love me, and mean it. Stay in the bathroom until I’ve changed into the plus size lingerie I custom ordered in anticipation for this day: This exact moment when I’m at least a Queen to a King. Square peg, round hole, after decades of waiting, Hortense would make an opposite fit.
“I hope you like it….”
Stamping validity to his marriage was, perhaps, the one thing Thomas could do right this second. Penetrating Hortense and releasing nature to take its course would potentially bring freedom and end this Cruise of Deception, and also, make amends to the lie he’s lived with her for three years. It was time. With his world collapsing, Stephen for once sought the right thing. Problem being, the key component on this Love Boat wasn’t willing.
He opened the bathroom door and his wife took his breath away. It was as if a whale and crossdresser were the victims of Capital One identity theft. The oddity of the sight, and knowing how long Hortense had waited…..no. There was no hope of an erection tonight. But how do you casually bring that up when your four-hundred pound wife is spread eagle over the bed of deception and the fortunes of hundreds of innocent people depend on you becoming a man?
“You look, beautiful….” The words shook as they dripped from Stephen’s mouth.
“Oh, Shoog…I do, don’t I?” Hortense stroked her left thigh, then playfully slapped at it. The ripples cause Thomas to slightly throw up in his mouth.
“This is,” Stephen crawled gingerly between her legs, fear dominant in his eyes, “really happening. Goodness…”
“Shooog…” the virgin giggled, she was a schoolgirl again, this time bent on keeping the promise to finish. “Not with the lights on.”
“Right! Knew I was forgetting something.” Thomas spring from his bed like a kid on Christmas morning and stood by the light switch next to the now dead locked door.
“Shoog, I may not be Teri Melton, but I know the pants have to come off.”
“They do?” his tone begged.
“Yes! Strip for me baby. Be momma’s whore.”
“Either you do it, or I’ll do it for you.”
He stood at the door weighing his options. Which one would bring him back to mental safety quicker?