Searching for Swimmers–Chapter 30
Wet warmth. Motion. Slipping and sliding, both his cock and body against the sweaty woman on top of him. He can’t see her. He just feels the wet warmth, her damp hair on his shoulders and face. How could he have ignored this tactile sensation for so long? Her heart beating in rhythm with her breath and gyrations. His insecurities vanquished—everything vanquished: life, love, memory, intelligence, knowledge, humanity—all gone. Nothing matters, just the wet warmth and her sweat pressed against his, her hair dangled across his skin like light fingertips. She looks at him. All he sees are her shining green eyes. He can’t make out her face but he doesn’t care. Her eyes absorb his vision. Her body absorbs everything else until they mingle into that one perfect, singular moment when it’s all lost and the world turns to white.
She gets up and goes to the bathroom. He lies there, spent. He can’t quite get a clear image of her in his head, but he doesn’t care. He lies there in complete darkness, every agitation, all worry, stress and knowledge evaporated. The room brightens, causing his eyes to hurt. He looks to his side. In the doorway, he sees the curvaceous woman. Still, he can’t pinpoint her face. She walks over and climbs back into bed, leaving the light on. He feels her breasts pressed against his ribs, her lips on his neck, then his ear. She whispers, “I’m pregnant.”
He starts out of bed, pushing her aside. “How do you know?”
“The doctor told me.”
He sees a silhouette in the doorway. Sweat drips into his eyes as he settles back into the bed. All of the insecurities return and so does the woman. He flinches at her touch. Her skin sticks to him like glue, and it feels like his skin is being ripped off when he pushes her away.
A man steps into the bedroom. “There are some strange genealogical anomalies.”
The woman kisses his neck and grabs his cock. He pushes her away.
“Tests show that the mother of the child is, in fact, the father’s mother.”
The woman is back on his neck. He fills nauseous. The doctor flips on the light. He looks down to see the naked body and face of his mother. His heart explodes, its rhythm unable to discern. The sheets get tossed aside, his mother tossed to the floor as he jumps out of bed. He stops at the door and looks back. His father stands before him, draped in the doctor’s white coat. “You’ve killed her.”
He sprints out of the door into a silent dark street. He stumbles to the ground, somehow clothed in boxer shorts. He stands up feeling the metallic taste of blood in his mouth. Still, he stumbles along. The streets are dark and silent. He turns a corner. A woman smiles, she’s pushing a stroller. He moves along. A man smiles with eyes wide. He looks across the street, hundreds of people turn their heads to look at him. He runs to the next corner into darkness, into a crowd of people—women. All of them women, holding babies, pushing strollers, babies strapped to their chests.
“Hi, Jason, I’d like you to meet your daughter,” one says.
“Hi, Jason, I’d like you to meet your daughter,” another says.
In unison, the lot of women say, “Hi, Jason, I’d like you to meet your daughter.”
Terrified, he runs around the next corner—vacant. He slows his pace to a walk, and all of the doors to the street side shops open, women funneling out. He walks through them, among them. Steadily, one bumps him in the shoulder. He moves on. Another bumps him in the shoulder, then the next one, followed by a knee in the crouch. Pain flashes in his mind, blacking out his surroundings. Light hits his eyes and opens on the face of a beautiful brunette woman with striking green eyes.
“Daddy, are you okay?”
He gets up and runs, followed by the voices screaming in different tones, “Daddy! Daddy! Daddy!” He falls down on the cement, skins his knee. He looks up, an old woman over him. “Daddy, are you okay?” He pushes the old women over and leaps up. He runs out of the door.
Slowly Jason’s mind identified his surroundings and circumstances. The door to the baby’s room was open behind him. Plush teddy bears…mobile… crib…old style rocking chair…It’s just a dream, he tried to assert. Despite the dream world and reality colliding, the room still represented a tangible fear. He felt his heart beating faster at the thought of returning to the air mattress. Instead he walked down the hallway, ignoring the pictures and artwork lining the walls, and went into the living room. He felt strange walking around a home, unescorted in the dark, that belonged to near strangers, but his mind was still rattled by the dream, so he didn’t focus on that feeling for too long.
Almost in a stupor, he sat down on the love seat.
“Jason, are you okay?”
“Jesus fuck!” Jason leapt from his seat.
Sheila, cloaked in darkness, got up from the couch as quickly as she could. “Shit, Jason, I didn’t mean to startle you.” She flipped on a lamp.
“No, no. It’s fine. As long as you’re not calling me daddy.”
Sheila gave him a confused look.
“Don’t worry. Nightmare is all.” Jason sat down. “What are you doing awake?”
“He’s a bit of night owl,” she said, patting her belly. She sat down next to Jason.
“Once he’s born, you’re going to wish raising children hadn’t become so PC.”
“What like a little bourbon in his bottle?”
“I was thinking more along the lines of shaking a baby, but hey, the bourbon thing could work too. Hell, one of the benefits to breast feeding.”
She laughed. “Sure, get tanked, feed him. He gets tanked and we all get a good night’s sleep.”
“Exactly. Things were just so much simpler back then.”
“You’re right.” Sheila smiled. “And I could share a bed with my husband. Cook him a breakfast of steak and eggs before sending him off to work at the coal mine, right?”
“Hey, sorry, I didn’t mean it like that.”
“It’s okay, Jason. I know you didn’t. You were just having fun, so was I. No, normally he wakes me up initially, so I get up and then I keep myself up, just thinking.”
“Yeah, about what?”
“Oh, you know, sort of everything.”
“So, you’re not thinking, you’re worrying.”
“Ah, I’d say a little of both. It’s funny how the two blend. Too much of one normally leads to the other.”
“And then it cycles back around.”
“Or it invades your dreams to such a terrifying extent that you’re forced to deal with it consciously.”
“Is that what happened tonight?”
“I guess, but I don’t really feel like talking about it.”
“Maybe next time you get assaulted in your sleep then.”
“It’s a date.”
Sheila laughed then stood up. “Let me get you a glass of water.”
“No, not necessary.”
“Please, I know you could use the hydration. You destroyed my girlfriend.”
“Sorry about that.” Jason followed Sheila into the kitchen.
“No, it’s okay. She needed it. She deserved it.”
“Is that what you think about at night?”
“No, that’s what I worry about.” She filled a glass from the Brita pitcher and handed it to Jason.
“Why? Louise seems like a good broad.”
Sheila remained silent.
“Shit, sorry. Not sure where that came from.”
“Simpler times, “ Sheila suggested.
“Yeah, that’s it. No, Louise seems like a solid mate and a good person.”
“Oh, and she is, along with many other great qualities. But it’s worry, Jason, completely unnecessary thought.”
“So, what is it? Worried she won’t be a good mom?”
“No. It’s more concern that the baby will have the opposite of its intended effect.”
“Separate instead of unite?”
“Yeah. Then that worry transforms to thought about life without Louise, which then turns into worry for our unborn baby.”
“What if the two of you breakup, and it really is his fault?”
“It’s crazy, right?”
“Well, in that situation, I’d say just tell him the truth. Don’t BS him and you’ve got the next great artist on your hands.”
“Or serial killer.”
“Fame either way. Hey, at least you would have contributed to the world in a big way.”
Sheila laughed. “Yeah, but I think I was looking more for you to say, ‘Hey, Shells, it’s crazy. You’re going to be a wonderful and happy family.’”
Jason put his hand on her knee and looked her in the eyes. “Shells, it’s crazy. You’re going to be a wonderful and happy family.” Jason removed his hand. “Now, tell me, did that really help any?”
She laughed. “Not a single fucking bit.”
“Of course it didn’t. Look, you know it’s all going to work out, one way or another, but no one has any way of knowing in advanced how it’s all going to go. And even if you were given that option, no way in hell it would benefit you and your family in any way. It’d be like an episode of the Twilight Zone.”
“Or a Rolling Stones’ song.”
“But what I can tell you, and I speak from experience, or lack of it, you can almost always get what you want, but you get jack shit if you don’t give it a shot. From what I’ve seen in the last twelve or so hours, leads me to suspect that it’s all going to turn out just fine for the three of you.”
Sheila’s eyes wetted and she embraced Jason. “Thank you.”
Jason felt emotion and sensation course through his body unlike he’d felt in decades. “Hey, don’t make me cry. I know it’s probably not a topic of conversation in the lesbian community, but it’s a sign of weakness in a man.” Sheila embraced him tighter and laughed.
She pulled away. “You’re a good man, Jason Purdue.” She kissed him on the mouth then wiped the tears from her cheeks. “And now it’s time for me to get some sleep.” She stood up and paused staring at Jason. “Shit, I was going to be all polite, but you do what you want. Drink what you want. Eat what you want. You know the drill.”
She walked to Jason and embraced his hand in both of hers. “Goodnight, Jason.” Then she left the living room.
Tears welled in Jason’s eyes. He turned off the lamp and slumped into the love seat.