Your erotic stories

Too many erotic stories. Erotic stories free to watch. Only the best porn stories and sex stories

An American Relocates

Category: Mature
BadFairGoodInterestingSuper Total 0 votes


Sun shafts through the treetops infiltrated early morning mist over the river as Loretta Oblinger sat in the sales office, hands warmed by a hot mug of coffee resting against her breasts. Smiling faintly, she contemplated the scene and thought about the wedding she’d attend that afternoon, alone, although the invitation stated ‘and partner’.

Tomboy (actually Tessa) was the last of her closest friends to commit to a guy, leaving Loretta almost thirty-four, last ‘maiden’ on the shelf. Oh there had been guys, plenty of them, including a few who could really send her blood racing. But only one had seemed to be Mr Right until he was taken from her. However, she’d not given up, believing one day her prince would come.

“And cum copiously,” she sighed, not at all embarrassed at that exclamation. Loretta rarely talked dirty but she thought dirty. Often.

A black and silver SUV pulled up. Loretta didn’t recognize the vehicle or the driver who looked about her age but when he turned she knew she didn’t know him. The guy had unruly long brown hair, a wide chest under his polo shirt and wore a hunting jacket, tight light-blue jeans and hand-tooled brown western boots. She judged he was rather too well dressed for a New Zealand guy on a Saturday morning. When about to enter after opening the door he wiped his boots, obeying the sign. She figured he had to be a foreigner.

She went out to greet him. “Hi, welcome. May I pour you a coffee?”

He said in an American accent, “That’s mighty fine of you Loretta.”

She almost dropped the coffee pot. He knew her!

Loretta looked at him carefully and decided he didn’t look the stalker kind although she really had no idea what they looked like. He appeared to read her confusion as she handed across the coffee.

“I live across the river from you at Miller’s Crossing, just moved in. The ferryman’s wife pointed you out to me and said you were house-sitting here at the Richard’s place.

“Yes, Marcia Richards is my aunt. They are touring Europe. I stay here at nights to keep an eye on the place that is a little isolated and I manage the store Saturday mornings to give the manager a two-day break.”

“It will be warm as it’s approaching mid-summer over there. Here’s okay though, I haven’t had my snow gear out yet.”

“You won’t be wearing it either Mr…?”

“Domboise but call me Harden ma’am.”

Loretta swallowed, rehearsing never to accidentally call him Mr Hardon or for that matter Mr Hard and Ready. Now what was his name? Miraculously, her mind being young, it dropped into place.

“Harden you’ll not find snow in winter around here. It occurs down in the center of the island and to the mountain ranges east of there on the Central Plateau experience light falls, but high up. By the way everyone calls me Loretta.”

“Ah, fine name.”

“My later mother was America and I was born in Nebraska.”

“Well, well. I’ve spent most of my life in Chicago and a few months ago had a big claim against my marine pile-driving company upheld by the court that ruined me financially and took my reputation with. My folk gave me a bucket of money that cannot be touched by the claimants and so here I am.”

“Oh I’m so dreadfully sorry at you loss Harden.”

Harden said softly, “Well at least I do have my mom and dad.”

What, no wife or lover? Loretta had to turn away.

He said solemnly, “No rings I see.”


“We’ll my wife left me as soon as my assets were frozen and later divorced me. Since we are neighbors perhaps we could negotiate a date?”


Harden appeared to be waiting for a more encouraging response.

“I…er…er…oh sod it. I’m not shy. Come with me to a wedding this afternoon a 4:00. Although I advised I’d be unaccompanied, the bride is one of my best friends and her mom is a great planner so will have asked for some extra settings.”

“Are you sure?”

“Does that mean the answer is yes?”

“I hadn’t gotten than far but since you are so keen and it’s been quite a while since I’ve had a prospective date apparently keen about me, the answer has to be yes.”

“I didn’t want you to feel pressured.”

“I don’t feel pressured.”

“You can always pull out.”

“I don’t want to pull out.”

“Oh, thank you. Pick me up a 3:30 as the church is only five minutes away and I can introduce you to people before the church service begins. I have the present.”

“This is wonderful Loretta. I’m off to the city to buy a formal shirt.”

“Excellent, now your purpose for being here. Timber or hardware?”

“Nancy at the store told me when I asked you worked at your father’s mill sales office. I came to ask if you wanted to accompany me to a movie tonight.” He looked at his boots and muttered, “Nancy said you were damn attractive.”

“Oh, how nice.”

“Um the wedding will give me the chance to meet local folk. I arrived from Fiji five days ago and most of me time has been taken up with finding a property with immediate possession, settling on it and buying some bits of furniture and the like. Some decking needs to be replaced and the riverfront fence was apparently swept away by the last big flood two years ago so needs replacing.”

“Will you’ll get hardware supplies from here and timber from dad’s mill?”

“I certainly will.”

“Then sign this application form for 60 days’ credit as a wholesale customer at this store. As you were a pile driver you qualify for contractor’s and tradesmen’s discount.”

“Well, that’s stretching eligibility. It’s mighty generous of you of you and the folk who own this store.”

Loretta involuntarily pressed her thighs together when she opened the door and grabbed the first look at her date. She was fairly tall for a woman at five-eleven but broad-shouldered Harden was at least six-three. His hair was slicked-back into a ponytail. He wore a dark green velvet jacket, collarless white shirt with gold medallion riding high, fawn pants and light brown shoes. She almost panted.

“You look gorgeous,” he said and asked her to turn around slowly.

Loretta did that, coloring slightly but she didn’t mind. He’d only say ‘confirmed’ or something similar. Because of the chill it was a lightweight wool suit, although riding high and with a plunging neckline.

She finished and adjusted her little hat, titling it towards her right eye. “Well?”

“Everything is cute: ass, legs and breasts. Suit is lovely too.”

Harden, I really don’t think…”

“Then why ask if you don’t except a frank answer?”

“Thank you Harden. It’s rather sweet you think my ass and legs and breasts are cute. That is a first for me, I mean someone saying that on a first date.”

“It’s important for me to have you know what I think of you Loretta.”

“Thank you,” she said, unable to hide a gigantic blush.

As expected, Harden drove like a male, aggressively, but he appeared firmly in control. Quite unexpectedly he ran the conversation, saying he loved living beside the river, he now had something very beautiful to look at across the water (more blushing, but he didn’t see it), his early impressions with the community north of Auckland City were very favorable and the timber yards at the mill were much larger than his first impression.

By then they’d arrived.

Six of Loretta’s friends were standing outside the church when Roger looking at Loretta and companion said something to Ivy. The women turned as one and mouths dropped open almost in unison. Loretta was ready to give Harden anything he wanted, ANYTHING, just for being with her at that moment.

The women rushed her and looked a little crossed-eyed trying to look at her and her partner at the same time. The introductions were made. Loretta carefully said the name as HardDEN, knowing what her friends were like. The smallest two, Judith and Christie, almost curtsied when the big mitt pushed forward to be shaken.

Ian said something quietly to Harden who nodded and accepted a silver flask. He took a swing without wiping the neck of the container and after swallowing wiped his lips with the back of his hand in the approved manner, closely watched by the men, and said, “Black rum, lovely drop.”

The guys circled him, sign of acceptance.

The women’s conversation was very earthy and could be summed up with Judith’s “Cor, where did you find HIM” and Ivy’s “I bet it’s a food long.” They gaped when Loretta said she’d only met him that morning and no they hadn’t had sex on the way to the wedding.

After the service and the official photographs on the church steps had been taken, the bride Tessa went straight to Loretta and demanded to be introduced. She then kissed Harden almost immodestly and from that moment all watching guests assumed Harden must be big cheese. People made a point of being friendly to him during the wedding breakfast and the dancing the followed.

At the door to the house Loretta said, “Well, what a lovely afternoon and evening. Please come in.”

Harden looked at his watch. “It’s almost 1 o’clock and you’re rather tipsy. Why do you want me to come in?”

“To give you a well deserved reward. You allowed me to have such a lovely time and now my girlfriends know I’ve found a real man, if only for tonight.”

“Loretta, I have no wish to upset you but please, not tonight. I know it was a wedding celebration but you were rather swigging them back and your judgment will be impaired. Good night and thank you. I really enjoyed myself and met some good people. I’ve been invited to go fishing with Ian and Roger. I have to be at the town wharf at 6:00.”

“Well hurry to bed. Obviously I come second to fishing.”

“Loretta please, you’ll love me in the morning for avoiding you being embarrassed at having me seduce you on our first date.”

Bottom lip trembling, Loretta asked, “Are more dates possible?”

“Oh yes.”

She kissed him and said, “You are quite right. God I’m drunk and we girls meet at the bride’s parents place at 10:00 to start all over again.”

“Take care. I’ll call at the mill on Monday to place my order for delivery of decking timber.”

“You can phone in your order…unless you wish to call to see me.”

“I wish to call to see you. You are a beautiful woman and not at all scatty for a blonde,” he said, drawing a frown and then received a big smile and another kiss.

* * *

Harden drove slowly to the ferry crossing, swiped his card that paid for the trip across and that also gave him access to the wheelhouse.

On the other side after driving off his SUV, Hayden returned to the wheelhouse, set the controls on to timed auto-control and sent the small vehicle ferry back to the other side forty yards away where it had protected docking below the ferryman’s house. He had time to lock the door and disembark before the unmanned ferry returned along its heavy-duty guide wire. He thought what a marvelous system to ensure a night service continued after the ferryman finished work.

In bed Harden couldn’t believe his luck, virtually falling into Loretta’s arms. She appeared perfect for him and at the wedding, with sixty guests present, apart from the bride’s mother in his opinion Loretta was the next most outstanding female there. He chuckled recalling the envious looks he’d received from her girlfriends. He could feel Loretta beside him almost shaking and gurgling in delight. Well he now had some people likely to become buddies, including Loretta. He was likely to go to bed with Loretta but anything more would depend.

Mrs Williams the bride’s mother would be the one to provide information about Loretta The girls including Loretta gathered around her as if she were Queen Bee and he sensed that had nothing to do with being the bride’s mother. She was all class and he hadn’t found out what it was, but his thinking she’d been an international celebrity of some kind, possible an actress or singer. If the extra fat were stripped away, she still would have lacked the cut to be a model or a dancer.

Miraculously Harden was down at the town wharf at 6:00 and a 6:15 a fast boat called a runabout with a 75hp Mercury outboard sped down from the marina and he saw someone wave and waved back. The only occupant was freckle-face Ian.

“Climb down,” Ian called cheerfully. “I arranged to pick you up here because getting in and out of the marina with its security systems is a pain in the arse. Harden thought arse was the English word for ass, confirming the Kiwis were more English than Americans.

“Roger is a no-show. I guess Judith wanted a fuck when they got home last night. They have an infant who wakes up every couple of hours and Roger would be expected to be on bottle duty. I saw him wander off with Wendy Mitchell last night both appearing to be innocently heading for the loos and next minute I saw them outside hand-in-hand presumably heading for Wendy and husband’s room for you know what.”

As they pulled away from the wharf and slowing as they hit the 15 mph speed limit in restricted waters, Harden was struggling to come to the Kiwi’s forthrightness, swearing and a more relaxed attitude towards promiscuous people so laughed and that only encouraged Ian to ask, “Sink a length last night buddy?”

“Ah no. We’d had so much liquor we would have not completed.”

“Yeah, same with us. There are few things worse that going to sleep on the job and being berated in the morning. Women don’t enjoy being with guys who don’t perform, even if it’s their husband.”

Although Harden hadn’t known that he now thought that would be the case.

They fished for only ninety minutes and then returned with five big snapper and two other fish Ian called blue cod. At the wharf Ian handed up a bag containing the fish, asking could he drop them off to Mrs Williams on the way home and gave the address, which was on the main road Harden used.

“She’s the bride’s mother and this is a contribution to food for tonight guests who drop in. The girl’s will process and prepare the fish for her. Her home has been the main hangout for the girl’s since they were at high school.”

“What does Mrs Williams do?”

“Nothing now. She was formerly a national breaststroke champion and won five gold medals at Commonwealth Games and a silver at the Olympics and then went on to be our country’s most successful female swimming coach. All the girls in our group you saw last night liked swimming almost as much as they like fucking.”

“Including Loretta?”

“I did say all of them.”

“Yeah right.”

“Loretta was the strongest swimmer of them all but switched to surf lifesaving and won several titles in competition between New Zealand, Australia and South Africa.”


“She’s bored mate, sitting in that office all day. You look the guy who could give her the action she needs.”

“You mean, um…”

“Yeah mate, fucking and also something to occupy her brain in the form of a challenge. Want a beer?”

“No thanks.”

“Me neither. Well I’m off.”

* * *

Jennifer Williams answered the door in shorts showing half her belly and a top obviously without a bra under it. Harden clearly saw the obviously remnants of powerful swimmer’s shoulders.

“Christ, you would catch me like this, plus without make-up.”

“You look cuddly.”

“Gawd, a silver tongued America. Give me the fish and come in for coffee but don’t stay too long and I’ll have to prepare for the arrival of guests. Thank God I had the sense last night to tell everyone if they wanted breakfast they could forget about coming here.”

“It was a beautiful wedding.”

“Thank you. My daughter Tessa told me she thought you were gorgeous. How did you come to meet Loretta so quickly? She said you’d only arrived in the country a few days ago.”

“I’ve acquired the Armstrong’s house just opposite where Loretta is holed up and met her for the first time yesterday morning.”

“And obviously made an impression on her?”

“I went in attempting to make progress, if you know what I mean. And succeeded well enough to be invited to accompany her to your daughter’s beautiful wedding.”

Jennifer said she was so happy seeing Loretta with a guy again. “She’s only just come out of mourning. She was out at one of the West Coast beaches eight months ago on a day of boisterous surf. A rip snaked across the bay. She told her fiancé to swim ashore while she helped get swimmers back on to the beach. She swam out about four hundred yards to the center of the rip where people had been swept out and were screaming. She calmed them, well most of them, and assured them help was on the way.”

“That sounds scary stuff,” Harden said

“The jet-skiers and lifesavers in four-man surf canoes and others on paddle boards with rescue rings began arriving. She went across the bay and brought back two kids, unconscious but both were revived without apparent ill effects. An old guy who and two younger guys didn’t make it. When they were taken ashore Loretta was dismayed her fiancé was not around. She looked out to the southwest and saw one guy floating face down. She jumped on to a water-ski and raced over. It was her fiancé Stephen, not a good swimmer. A rescue helicopter dropped her an oxygen bottle but it was too late. It’s left her with a sad streak that she hides Harden.”

“I sensed there was something.”

“Good boy, I pleased to hear that. Just go easy with her, huh? Her father half-blames her for her mother’s death saying because she was a female and closest to her mother she should have read the signs earlier than the doctor that she had cancer, invasive cancer. That’s bullshit of course. But you know how some men can’t cope with grief… no I suppose you don’t.

“Thank you for briefing me Mrs Williams. It is most useful. I’ll go now.”

“Thanks for bringing the fish. I guess you caught some of them?”

“Yeah, I went out with Ian. It was the incoming tide he said.”

“Ian is a lovely guy. Call me Jennifer in future Harden. Again I’m sorry you caught me all floppy like this.”

“I saw nothing but a woman in her prime.”

Jennifer laughed and said, “Off you go your flatterer.”

Harden went home and unpacked some of the furniture he’d purchased a couple of days earlier. He had a long way to go before the empty house would be furnished. The outgoing family had taken everything, including their refuse, and that was fine by him.

He’d just finished placing the table and six chairs in the family room extension of the kitchen, wondering why he’d bought six chairs. He didn’t know six people in this country. Oh, after yesterday he did. Well, he didn’t have to invite everyone around at once. He decided after what Jennie had said he wouldn’t call or visit Loretta until next Saturday morning. That would give her plenty of time to decide if she liked him and check with the FBI or whatever women did before taking on a man. His phone went.

“Hi, it’s Harden Domboise.”

“I hope it’s hard tonight.”

Jesus. “Loretta?”

She laughed. “And who else were your expecting to call?”

“No one, not even you because you indicated you were going to an all-day party.”

“Well, we’re bored and can’t face the evening just with women. Jennifer said we must invite the men so I’d like you to come over as my man. “I’ve had only two wines and drank them slowly and now am drinking water. I don’t want you telling me I’m not in the right condition to be fucked.”



“Er…yes, I accept your invitation.”

“What to come here or come hugely tonight?”



“Er… nothing.”

“I admire your diplomacy. Jennie said my lovely man dropped the fish off so you know the address. I await your first kiss so please don’t loiter.”

Harden drove home with Loretta’s hand on his thigh. She didn’t talk about sex or move her hand. It appeared she was indicating he’d not be allowed off the hook this time. Well, she was relatively sober so if she wanted it she could have it. As they neared the ferry he said, “My house?”

“Do you have a bed and a table?”


“Hot water, soap and towels and drinking water and coffee?”

“Yes, but not food or other creature comforts.”

“Well, it sounds like you have everything we need. I don’t want to make a pig of myself tonight because I start work at 7:00. Let’s mess around for a couple of hours and then go somewhere for late supper.”

As they entered through the kitchen she lifted up her arms and he pulled off her top. The bra was rather full and he licked his lips, making her purr, “Good boy.” She was perfectly relaxed so he worked out a tit, she helping, and he left her to finish undressing while he playing around and soon had the nipple rock hard. By then she was pushing down her panties with a foot.

“Lay me across the table. That’s why I was interested to learn you had a table.”

Harden frog-marched her backwards and they kissed and when her butt hit the table he dropped to his knees and went pussy exploring and oh boy, did she like that. She though people lined up nearby waiting for the ferry after being to beaches or in the FWD vehicle after driving dirt tracks upriver through forestland and hearing her noise must be thinking a cat was being desexed.

In less than three minutes she convulsed into his mouth. She dropped to her knees after he dropped his pants and she murmured between long licks, ‘Oh God, is this all for me. Oh God.”

After Loretta swallowed some of Harden’s load and he ran off to grab a towel for her they had round two on the bed. She was in great need so they were into it full on. She banging back at him, setting such a fast pace they soon soared over the top and fell back and chatted.

“A woman’s cunt is amazing,” she said, appearing amazed. “I wondered if I was capable of taking all of you, but not a problem.”

“You obviously haven’t had one for quite some time. Perhaps you have lost perspective of size?”

“You are big Harden, make no mistake about that. No way it that thing going up my arse.”

He was pleased about that because he wasn’t really interested in that alternative passage.

They jawed until she said, “It’s 7:30 so we should go. Come over for a quick pizza and coffee and then I’ll go to bed, alone. I’ve had an energetic weekend, all in all including my first fuck in months. I’ll go out like a light as soon as my head hits the pillow.”

As soon as Loretta put the pizza in the oven she called someone.

“Hi Megan. You know my big guy Harden you met at the wedding yesterday?”

Harden of course couldn’t hear the response. The Loretta said, “Yeah, well we are a number. I’ve been over to his place and there’s nowhere to fuck apart from his bed.”

“Yes, I’m glad you agree it’s restrictive. Look, you are marketing manager for Tony’s parents furniture and furnishings store…”

“Yes, practically the entire house. There’s only a bed and table and chairs there.”

“Discount? Well I gave you 30% when you and Tony built your house. Fine. See you during the week lovely lady.”

Harden looked at Loretta expectantly.

“Megan’s in-laws run a furniture store. It’s expensive but justified because everything they have is quality. What they don’t stock they’ll order in for you. But they have most stuff including white ware. The deal is everything delivered to you will be at cost plus 30% markup. You’ll save heaps because I know some of their items are cost plus 250% mark-up.”

“That’s wonderful, you are a darling.”

“Thank you.”

He smiled and scratched his nuts boldly. ” I’ll call in tomorrow to kiss you and to order my decking timber after I measure up and then I’d like to see your father.”

“My father? I’m a big girl, you don’t have to ask permission to fuck me.”

Harden laughed. “No, I wanted to talk to him about that timber piling in the marina and how business works in this town.”

“Well we supplied the treated piles for that marina and all the hardwood decking imported from Australia but cannot do that any more if the council extends the marina because dad in now on the council and is deputy chairman and those occasions preclude him from doing business with the council. But talk to him anyway as he has a good mind for business. Do you know why our buildings at the mill look crappy?”

“Because of the risk of fire destroying investment or perhaps to save money?”

“No, dad figures more people do business with you when you don’t look flashy and overly successful. You wait until you go inside his house or inside his keelboat to see real money talking but not indicated on the exterior. He even replaces sails with second-hand sails. Skinflint Oblinger knows what he’s doing.”

Taking the ferry home after exploring some of the eastern beaches on Sunday Harden made the crossing with a family in a big vehicle towing a fishing boat. The woman climbed out of the vehicle and said she thought he was the American people were talking about.

They introduced themselves the other three members of the family joined them and also said hi. The teenage girl offered him the last piece of cake in a tin. He declined but they all said he must have it so he ate it and said yummy. The mother, Shirley Blake, blushed and said he must come to dinner at 7:00 on Tuesday. “We are only a little way down Riverside Street from you and Kim who is sixteen is going to America in a few months on a student exchange scheme. Where do you hail from?”


“Ohmigod,” Kim shrieked, making her younger sister grin. That immediately told Harden she was going on a student exchange scheme somewhere in Chicago.

Kim’s father Ross slapped Harden on the back and said, “You couldn’t have come from a more convenient place as far as we are concerned mate. We want to know about crime, American kid’s Kim’s age and how can we ensure she doesn’t become a prostitute and do hard drugs.”

“Or take any drugs,” Harden said firmly.

“Oh Harden, and we glad we’ve found you,” Shirley said, appearing almost ready to kiss him.

Walking into his home, Harden thought the way to be assimilated into a new country was to live locally and to latch on to a date who was popular locally. It was just a matter of finding a common focal point, or several.

After brushing his teeth he thought about Loretta. It really hadn’t been a seduction. As she called it they’d fucked. He worried about it until it came to him. He ought to give her time; what had been lacking was passion mixed with tenderness. The whole thing had been far too mechanical. Yes, give her time and lead her into a more passionate relationship. He wanted her to get her to the stage that he was the only guy she wanted to fuck and to be with and to know in her heart that was so. He’d consider involving her in two things to involve their chances of really bonding. He’d get her to choose things for his home, right down to paintings for the walls, and he’d look at setting up a project involving her.


Loretta had four guys in a line waiting to be served so Harden walked to the counter and dropped his order down and as he turned to leave Loretta blew him a kiss. That was a bad move by him. The four guys were now looking at him as if he’d just come out of a hole in the ground.

Harden asked around in the yard and he was pointed in different directions until he found a burly white-headed guy who looked as if he could punch through steel.

Just a casual “Hi, Mr Oblinger” was sufficient. The guy said hi, he was Terry and Harden must be the big American guy people had told him was sniffing around his daughter.

“Sniffing? I went with Loretta to Tessa’s wedding on Saturday, met her again at Jennie Williams place yesterday and just delivered her an order for 300 lineal feet of hardwood decking. Is that sniffing?”

“Put it here mate,” Terry said, holding out his hand. “Don’t bitch with me; that was just my way of opening a conversation and look at the dump of information I got.”

“So I don’t have to knock your teeth down your throat Terry?”

Terry grinned and said, “You’ll all right mate. So why are you keeping me away from my work?”

“A chat about business. I was running a successful pile-driving outfit in Chicago until I had too many jobs going simultaneously and had an asshole foreman who stepped up the driving rate of concrete piles at twice the agreed rate. Of course a diver examination revealed many of the piles had fractured and I got slugged with a $4.3 million writ that under arbitration was reduced to $2.4 million but that still put me out of business. I sold everything including my house and car and the claimant finally agreed I’d paid the price so I escaped formal bankruptcy. My wife divorced me, walking away with fuck-all and here I am ready to make a new start in New Zealand. I’d like to start up pile driving, wooden piles, in the marine environment. I saw the marina yesterday morning and Loretta said you guys supplied the piles and decking.”

“Yeah, but that’s a council-owned facility and when it’s extended because I’m a councilor I will be automatically disqualified from tendering for the work.”

“Hmmm, but is there chance of pile driving contracts around here?”

“Come for a little walk with me young man and I’ll show you something.”

They stood on the bank looking across the river.

“The big flood two years ago scoured that bank opposite, taking out the trees that protected that bend against scouring and almost an acre of newly prepared prime industrial land went as well. That land is in Newcomb District Council that is mainly rural, and being outside our council’s jurisdiction so if you can win the contract to drive in a protective wall along the original river line of 880 feet I’d be free to compete to supply the pressure treated timber piles. Do that well and your reputation would spread through Newcomb and our city council territory. Our council will oppose the five-acre of the industrial block proceeding, going all the way to the Environment Court if necessary, until the land is protected adequately against flooding. We don’t want the river setting a new course.”

Harden said he could be very interested and Terry said he had the design plans, the engineer’s suggested work schedule and specifications in his office.

“The engineer’s found two firms interested but one went bust and the other was keen but the land developer had problems with his insurance company over the loss and he and his insurance company are now suing the Newcomb Council for not having the riverbank adequately protected when the council sold the land to the developer.”

“Ouch, that will be a long and difficult court battle.”

Terry said yeah and a court hearing date had still not been set because attorneys were still investigating liability arguments in similar cases and the search had gone internationally.

“Where is the equipment of the piling contractor who went bust?”

“Mostly unsold at McEwan’s machinery yards including the two barges.”

“Do you have a contact with that company?”

“Yeah, Neville McEwan is a mate. Want me to arrange a visit?”

“Yes please. And if the gear looks good I’d suggest we set up a meeting with the land developer, Newcomb Council and the insurance company to see if we can reactivate this scheme. I recall a case in Illinois where the city administration found it cheaper to share the cost of the stalled project than defending its embargo on work proceeding in a lengthy court battle.”

“But wouldn’t the public have been angry at its council subsidizing a developer’s project?”

“No, the public showed no interest. The council met its cash commitment by rebating the developer past local taxes on the land and giving tax credits for the balance that were transferable to the new owners of the land which meant the developer could on-sell the entitlements at a discount.”

Terry grinned. “The guy who thought that one up must be a real tax dodger. I like the sound of it and it could be just the trick to get the project underway. Are you ready to go for early lunch? We need to talk more.”

The timber yard closed at 4:00 so when Harden returned with Terry he waited for Loretta to finish up. After lunch he and Terry had gone to McEwan’s yard and after having a few beers in Neville McEwan in his office inspected the pile driving equipment. The yard owner had said he was almost ready to give the equipment away. Harden grinned but had made no comment, thinking that information would keep.

Harden took Loretta to coffee and she was most interested to hear about his talks with her father and the possibility of them running a project together although Terry had not said how much backing he’s provide until they had some figures in front of them. Harden thought she was looking at him with new interest and she positively glowed at him when he invited her to accompany him to call on Megan and select some of his requirements for the house.

Megan kissed them both, establishing in Harden’s mind that was a greeting as a new friend rather than a customer with money to spend. He pulled out his notebook and they walked around, Megan writing down his choices and Loretta providing advice about coordinating of color and styles.

When Megan went away to get a leaflet on dinning table sizes Harden said, “Your advice on color is really your color preferences but then in my ignorance I’d been in danger of having near-incompatible mixes.”

Loretta blushed.

“I guess you’ll be spending the part of some nights with me and so I invite you to consider moving in with me when your aunt and uncle return. Your dad has gotten used to you no longer being at home and you could suggest he finds a lady companion.”

Loretta choked at the double whammy and had not replied when Megan arrived back.

When they were driving back to drop Loretta off where she’d left her car near the crossroads, she said, “D-do you think my father wants to replace my mother?”

“I wouldn’t think he thinks like that. He mentioned that he’d occasionally dates a woman but hasn’t taken her home because of you.”

“Of me! What did he say?”

Harden told Loretta to calm down and said it was something she should discuss with her father.

She went to bite back but caught herself. She asked calmly, “Please tell me what he said.”

“Keep calm Loretta. He said his late wife’s ghost, your mother, still exists in the house because of you. You won’t let go.”

“Oh God.”

“So it’s true?”

“Put that way yes. She was too young to die Harden.”

He said kindly reaching to stroke her cheek. “The young also die.”

At that she seized his hand and kissed it. “I hadn’t really given much thought about dad. I have all of mom’s clothes in the wardrobe in the guest room and her nightdress and gown on the bed, slippers on the floor, ready for her to come home. Oh God, poor daddy.”

“If it’s any comfort to you he’s probably conditioned to not looking into that room. Pack everything up and remove everything from the house Loretta. I’ll store it at my house if you wish.”

“That’s very kind of you, but no thank you. I’m off home to talk to daddy about this and to say I’m sorry.”

“May I suggest you don’t be overly apologetic? He might not be at all cross with you, only just saddened that you can’t let go.”

They drove in silence to where Loretta’s car was parked. She kissed Harden and said she’d probably sleep at her father’s house that night.

“Fine, I’ll call you about Friday night.”

“Oh crap, I’ve fucked up,” he yelled when on the ferry, thumping the steering wheel. He knew his interference had distressed Loretta. He decided to phone her and then thought no, that would be bad timing. Let her father sort her out. They probably were suffering some sort of post-death depression.

“The ferryman leaned out the wheelhouse window and inquired, “Are you okay Harden?”

“Yes thanks Jimmy.”

“You’re screwing Miss Loretta aren’t you?”

“Not at the moment,” Harden said wistfully.

Jimmy guffawed and said he could see that and Harden smiled. He was first off the ferry and after that humorous exchange with Jimmy felt more cheerful and his shoulders really squared when he found a vehicle outside his house with the engine still running. Shirley Blake waved and she jumped out of the SUV wearing a tight dark blue leotard. She walked to the driveway gate and waited for him to get out of his vehicle.

Harden looked at the great rack and swallowed.

“Hi, she said. “I was on my way home and thought I should drop by and remind you about dinner tomorrow night. Kim will be beside herself if you fail to show.”

“No it’s okay. I have a note on my kitchen bench. I’d ask you in for coffee but it’s pretty basic inside at present. I have heaps of stuff on order.”

“That’s fine. I couldn’t have gone in looking like this,” she said, almost cupping her breasts. “Ross would kill me.”

“And I wouldn’t blame him,” Harden grinned, looking at just above Shirley’s hands. She smiled and said she must go. She waved gaily as the big diesel vehicle roared off. Harden waved still thinking of her earlier reaction, being absolutely sure her smile had turned into a smirk when he’d looked up from her tits. What did that mean?

He took his shopping inside and ten minutes later looked through the kitchen window and was glad he wasn’t screwing Shirley on the kitchen table. Loretta’s father Terry had arrived and was coming to the door carrying a bottle of whisky.

Predicting the worst after saying hi and shaking hands, Harden said, “Is it ominous Loretta hasn’t accompanied you?”

“I reckon not. We’ve had a bit of a bust-up and she’s gone off the stay with her maternal grandmother at Taupo for a few days. Milly will sort her out and she’ll come back fine. I’ll live over the hardware shop still she returns and stopped on the way over to have a drink with you.”

Terry looked around and said, “Do you have any glasses. This place looks as bare as a cat’s emptied litter box. Even a couple of jam jars will do.”

“No I have whisky, wine and beer glasses.”

“Well that says your prorieties are right.”

Looking worried as he returned with two glasses Harden said, “I apologized for interfering in something that had nothing to do with me.”

Terry poured three fingers of whisky into each glass and grinned. “Son if I’d been looking for an apology I’d not arrived carrying whisky.”

Harden managed a weak grin.

“You’ve done good Harden. Stop worrying. This thing between Loretta and me needed initiating and you’ve done that. We’d reached a stage where I guess we both thought there was no solution. Neither of us was thinking straight. Earlier today she came in to my office, slammed the door shut and accused me of being a gutless wonder for not tossing her and her mom’s clothing and other personal items from the house. No one talks to me like that so I gave it to her vocally, both barrels.”

“In the end she cried and I felt like going the same. I went to hug her and she pushed me away so I bellowed I’d tan her bare arse.”

She stood defiantly and yelled, “Go on you big ox. Just you try and I kick your nuts out through your asshole.”

“I was so shocked I stood stunned and then my belly laugh triggered. She looked at me stupidly and whimpered and came running into me arms and we kissed, with me fighting back tears. I settled her and we talked it through and she decided to go off to grandma’s for a few days to give me the chance to clear her mother’s things from the house.”

Harden stood, finished his whisky and said, “Come on.”

“Where to?”

“To clear the house but not quite. I’ll help you.”

“Oh that’s and offer I can’t refuse son, thanks. I didn’t feel up to it and was thinking of inviting the wife of my yard manager to help.”

“I think I know what to. We fill your pickup with the things and then use the yard tractor with the bucket used to load sawdust to dig a big hole. We dump everything into the hole, set fire to burnable stuff and then fill in the hole. If you like I’ll do it and then you won’t know where her stuff lies buried.”

“No I wouldn’t have a problem with that. But why not sell the stuff to secondhand shops?”

“Jesus Terry, can you imagine how Loretta would react if she saw another woman wearing one of her mother’s dresses?”

“Oh yeah,” Terry said. “Loretta would probably strangle that innocent woman and strip the dress from the body. You’re real brainy Harden.”

In the guest bedroom Harden said, “Was this your wife’s wedding dress?”


“Put it in the wardrobe along with a couple of dresses you remember as being Loretta’s favorites and the jewelry stays on the dresser, all of it. Loretta might decide to wear it as it the items were heirlooms.”

“Are you sure? I’m beginning to lose confidence in you.”

“Are you wishing to steal your daughter’s memories? She may decide to wear that wedding dress to her own wedding.”

“I don’t think so. She shows no interest in marriage. Well she had become a little dotty over you. Do you intend marrying her?”

“First things first Terry. I have yet to make up my mind about you.”

Terry bellowed in laughter and told Harden he was all right, quite a guy.

“Where are the photos of your wife and your wife with your guys?”

“In the basement.”

“Well tomorrow you get a selection of framed photos out of storage and hang them on the walls of the passage. Your wife is only dead Terry; there is no need to obliterate her. Loretta wants to remember her mom vividly and I’ll suggest your first reaction in grief was to bury everything about that although I reckon your thinking like than changed some time ago.”

Terry sniffed and dabbed a thumb and finger into the inner ends of his eyes and ran the thumb and finger down the side of his nose. “You are probably correct. Let’s load the pickup and get this clean out over with.”

“With this stuff mostly gone from the house other women may not feel like intruders when visiting here. It will no longer look like a dead woman’s house.”

“Yeah may be. Perhaps it’s time for me to think about sinking a length into a woman.”

“Now you’re smoking Terry. Loretta will be delighted.”

“Now you are fucking clawing at the impossible.”

Harden grinned and said it appeared he already knew Loretta better than her father.

“Get away with you,” Terry chuckled, grabbing an armful of clothes. “At the very least you are entertaining.”

A couple of hours later the two men were in a restaurant looking at two large steaks.

“We did good this afternoon thanks to you pal,” Terry said. “And it’s a real pleasure having a meal with a guy without having greens dumped on the plate to half blot out the look of fries nestling against a juicy steak. Women just don’t understand food.”

Harden smiled, “You’re right Terry. Another beer?”

From that day Terry began acting very much like a father-in-law to a guy who responded, well, much like a son-in-law. For four days there was no woman in the triangle but the two guys talked as if she was there with them but in another room or out shopping.

The day after the burial of his late wife’s disposals, Terry phoned several people to set up a meeting with ‘an experienced American ‘marine pile-driving contactor’, mentioning what he had in mind. He also called up his retired older brother, a formal naval hydrologist who agreed to come a thousand miles to spend a couple of days inspecting the washout area and to study data on river flows and upstream engineering works to counter erosion. Frank agreed to do that for the cost of return air tickets and to be hosted by Terry and to have any research expenses reimbursed. Frank said he’d arrive next day. Meanwhile under pressure from Terry, Harden visited Neville McEwan’s yard to re-inspect the pile-driving equipment. It looked better than he remembered.

“I reckoned you’d be back so I had everything steam-cleaned, a bit of maintenance done and everything given a protective coat of oil.”

“What so you can charge more for this useless stuff?”

“Fair go mate,” Neville whined. “I’m entitled to get back what I paid, holding and maintenance expenses and to claw in a bit of profit. It may interest you to know your father-in-law called to warn if I attempted to chisel you he’d be over to sort me out.”

“Terry’s not my father-in-law.”

“I know but his gorgeous Loretta who unofficially is my god-daughter needs a husband and Terry says she’s infatuated with you and he figures you’ll buckle under the pressure.”

Harden was too smart to reject that statement amid business negotiations. The way Loretta was ignoring him indicated she had really gone cold on him and as the Kiwis say, he was dog tucker as far as she was concerned.

“Well yes the wedding is taken for granted by Terry and I guess with you being the unofficial godfather if the wedding does occur we’d have to add you to my attendants to partner the maid or matron of honor.”

“Fair go?”

“Is the very least you’d expect isn’t it?”

“Oh yeah, yeah pal. You two will breed great kids.”

“Neville why is you status unofficial god-father?”

“I’m not married. Women spurn me because of my lifestyle. The regard me as bottom of the heap only just above rag and bone collectors, toilet cleaners and funeral directors.”

“Do you have money?”

“More than you’ll ever see in your lifetime young man.”

“Then the maid of honor we pick must by a juicy woman who can cook, doesn’t mind living in a junk yard and likes spending money.”


Looking around furtively, Harden looked back at Neville and whispered, “A babe who likes her sex hard and messy.”

“Jeepers bring it on,” wheezed the 50-year-old unshaven man who looked as if he never showered or even washed. “How soon will you marry?”

A few whiskies later Harden returned to Terry’s office with a done deal. Neville had settled for everything Harden wanted at cost price plus 5%. Although Harden was convinced Loretta would never marry him and for that matter never allow him to shaft her again, he didn’t believe it was a poor deal from Neville’s perspective. The three barges, set up for piling work, were in poor condition and that would make them uneconomic to convert into cargo carriers. The other equipment that had been kept in old sheds was in good nick but who would be lining up to buy it?

On Tuesday Harden walked along the street to the Blake’s home at number 7 where he was due for dinner and to assure the parents and nervous daughter that going to Chicago to study on a student exchange scheme for a year would not see the kid returning to New Zealand completely programmed and feeling like a foreigner in her own country.

Kim and Shirley met him at the door, and Kim held out her hand in greeting but Harden grinned and said wouldn’t she prefer a kiss and kissed her lightly on the mouth.

“Oh I’ll have one of those,” Shirley cooed, brushing aside her daughter and kissing their guest full on the mouth, very firmly, and pressing hard against him.

“Mom,” Kim said weakly and the two adults pulled apart as if they’d been shot.

Inside the beautifully restored wooden house of the 1930s, Ross was attempting to fix one of his 14-year-old’s pendant earrings and called, “Hi mate, grab a beer from the fridge. I’ve already started.

“I’ll get it,” Shirley and her elder daughter said in unison but Kim was already halfway to the fridge by the time her mother reacted further.

“Dad you’re an engineer, you ought to be able to fix a fiddly thing like a much-metal ear-ring.”

“Hush Lesley, I’m concentrating. Nah I’ll have to get a pair of pliers from the workshop.”

“May I take a look?” Harden asked and Ross handed him the bent coated wire that went through the pierced lobe and the tiny chain that attached to a silver elephant.

“Yeah, muck metal. It’s too soft for this purpose. Do you have a pair of scissors Ross?”

“Here you are,” called Shirley, opening a kitchen drawer and rushing over to hand Harden the scissors, spewing French perfume in his direction.

“I don’t want my ear-ring I bought in Fiji cut,” Lesley cried as she watched Harden use the eye rings of the scissors to gently squeeze close the offending open metal ring to join the two pieces.

“All done, Harden smiled and bent over and expertly hooked the ear-ring through the young teenager’s ear.

“Do you do your wife’s ear-rings?” Lesley asked, apparently surprised he’d done that so deftly.

“Mr Domboise is not married darling but I guess he gets plenty of practice… with ear rings if he has girlfriends,” Shirley said.

Ross coughed on his beer and wiping his lips with the back of his hands said, “You ought to be an engineer Mr Domboise.”

The guest smiled and patting Lesley on the shoulder said, “Please everyone call me Harden and that includes you Lesley.”

Harden was appalled to watch Shirley look at his crotch quite leisurely. She then said, “Where’s my drink Ross?”

“I thought you’d had enough this side of dinner.”

“I’ll be the judge of that Ross,” Shirley said coolly. “Come girls we’ll show out guest through the house.”

Carrying Shirley’s gin and tonic, Ross caught up with them in the main bedroom to hear the guest say, combining two bedrooms like this to provide a larger bedroom with a walkthrough dressing room to the bathroom and adding glassing to follow the original roofline has been expertly designed and accomplished. There is no sign of the steel joist supporting roof where the former bearing walls were removed to enlarge area.”

“Did Shirley tell you we incorporated another bedroom to end up with this result?” Ross asked curiously.

“No Ross but doesn’t everyone know family homes of the 1930s didn’t incorporate dressing rooms and en suites?”

Ross grinned and saluted their guest with his beer bottle.

“Daddy designed all the alterations and supervised the construction,” Kim said and added proudly, “He even sent the main steel beam back for replacement because it wasn’t to specification. That caused a delay and he and the building contractor almost had a fight.”

“That daddy would have won,” Lesley said loyally.

“Yes good old daddy,” Shirley said and looked at their guest, her lips parted.

Harden made an intelligent decision, deciding to not allow Shirley to get close to him. She appeared to be on heat. That worked successfully apart from her stroking his pants leg several times during dinner with her shoeless foot.

During dinner Harden talked about Chicago, found out where the family lived who would be hosting the Kiwi student. Kim and her parents showed their relief when he said he knew the locality and actually knew the school she would attend as having an excellent all-round reputation.

Glancing at Ross Harden said, “Actually Helen Merryweather graduated from that high school.”

“Is she a film star?” Lesley asked and her mother hiccupped and said probably.

But Ross said almost reverently, “She is one of the world’s foremost design engineers in suspension bridges and at present is a design team leader on some of the amazing construction development in Dubai.”

When Harden was leaving he was farewelled as if he were the most important and influential guest ever to visit the family. Shirley was almost asleep on her feet so didn’t attempt to molest him. Ross shook his hand and said they probably would be working together soon.

“How’s that.”

“I know who you are. I’m consulting structural engineer to Newcomb District Council. It’s chief engineer told me he was at a meeting addressed by Terry Oblinger, you and a hydrologist and Eric said amazingly you guys appear to have all the answers to their dilemma over their flood-threatened land and offer the break-through to get our stalled project up and running. If the council agrees to the proposals of you guys it is likely I’ll be commissioned to supervise the piling contract on behalf of the council.”

“That’s great news Ross. We’ve heard nothing about Newcomb Council’s reaction.”

* * *

Three days after Frank had returned home after delivering a very damning report to the meeting Terry had organized, Harden was walking down Pioneer Boulevard when a blonde rushed him screaming, “Darling!” and was all over him, flattening her tits over his chest, ramming her groin against his, pulling his head back painfully by his hair and crushing her lips against his.

It was Loretta.

He though jeepers, what sort of dope had she taken?

“Dad met we at the airport and we both reunited like a very happy father and daughter, both agreeing all was forgiven. He took me home and oh Harden, I’d expected to find every trace of mom vanished but the first thing I saw was the display of pictures of her in the passage, a true memorial. In the guestroom I her jewelry on the dresser where I’d left it and then he told me to open the wardrobe door and then I saw the unbelievable, her wedding dress, her two best dresses that I loved and her pair of battered red shoes that I used to wear round the house when I was a girl.”

“Oh darling, I knew it had to be you. It would be impossible for him to think like that. He said you’d come up with all the ideas and then you guys destroyed everything else. Oh I’m so happy. Driving to Taupo I cried thinking of those red shoes and mom’s wedding dress being tossed out and that night grandma had to come in to settle me. I had this nightmare of walking down this boulevard and seeing every second woman coming towards me wearing mom’s clothes. Oh it was so devastating.”

“Harden will you marry me?”

Now Harden was completely shocked. He asked was she on something.

Loretta looked down and said no, she wasn’t standing on his feet.

“No I mean drugs?”

“Harden, I don’t take fucking drugs.”

Two women standing near them moved away, looking at Loretta a little anxiously.

Harden mopped his brow.

Loretta asked why was he sweating? It was cold not hot. “Omigod you’re drunk.”

“No just under pressure and mighty anxious. Look let’s go somewhere for lunch. I can’t give you a decision about marriage until we talk everything through. If I don’t start pile driving work within the next couple of months I may have to leave the country for not meeting my terms of entry into New Zealand as an alien but possessing required skills.”

“Oh god, what a mess,” Loretta said as they began walking off, passing the two apprehensive women who eased farther away from Loretta.

“Not necessary. Your father has initiated talks to involve me in that piling contract across river, with you setting up your independent company dealing only in piling. I have move to possess barges and most of the associated equipment by provisional contract, due to expire in sixty days unless I complete the purchase. It is little use me purchasing the equipment if I don’t have the contract.”

“Wow, it’s all likely to fall into place. Look I’m not hungry. Can we go to your place and you welcome me home? Um you’ll know how. Your new furniture should have arrived.”

“Yes it came yesterday and the drapes, curtains and blinds were installed yesterday afternoon and this morning.”

“Good, let’s go.”

* * *

After fighting with her father about her mother’s possessions being left out and displayed in guestroom and eventually they both backed off and then hugged. Both of them were crying and Loretta had felt a huge sense of relief, knowing it was she who’d screwed up on this issue from the moment they came back from the funeral. She saw it now, so clearly, that her mind about wishing to remember her mother physically she’d had gone off the rails a bit and found it impossible to let go.

Loretta had been acutely aware she was going against her father’s wishes so she had avoided the conflict by shifting everything into the guestroom so she could isolate herself when grieving with her mother. Her grieving finally dissipated but she still had no wish to let go: sitting in that room talking to her mother and eventually only having thoughts about her mother but it remained a daily ritual. She knew it was awkward for her father but that he really wouldn’t care. But then Harden pointed it out Loretta hadn’t been aware her behavior had stopped her father getting on with his life.

Driving towards the lake-end town of Taupo she’s cried, “I’ve stolen at least six months of life from dad, keeping him pinned down like that.”

She knew of course that wasn’t quite true and he’d been rutting around because she’d heard whispers and had even seen him with woman but not the type of female she would imagine him marrying. But did she really know her father? Loretta conceded that could be true because she’d always been mummy’s girl. Since his wife’s death he’d allowed his business to run down.

“God, I’m responsible for that.”

Jessica Arthur her grandmother was delighted to see her.

“Sorry Gran, I should have called. I need to stay a few days.”

“Family has no need to call,” Jessica said fondly. “You father called so I know what this is about.”

“Oh Gran,” Loretta wailed and began receiving the hugs and whispered assurances she desperately required.

At breakfast on the morning after the nightmare Jessica looked at her granddaughter and said, “Darling you look more at peace. I believe you are over it. You know I loved my youngest daughter more than my other two children and so did Harold. We didn’t mean to but your mother was that kind of woman; she had an infectious manner. We were appalled when she married your father, going away to live with him at that river town. He didn’t appear to be her type, being rough and vulgar and for a while her spirit faded but then you came along on her life regained its old zip. When she died I suspected we’d have trouble with you.”

“You did?”

“Yes, you gave up your teaching position to nurse her through that long sickness. You grandfather and I visited often and I remember Diana saying towards the end, “Where is Loretta, she gives my life.”

“Well I did love her.”

“And not your father?”

“I-I think so but in a different way.”

Jessica took her granddaughter’s hand and said softly, “Perhaps you ought to review your relationship with him. He must still be feeling terribly lost although being Terry he won’t show it.”

“But he doesn’t care and never has.”

Jessica just smiled and Loretta and shook her head and said, “That’s not true darling and it never was.”


Loretta and Harden entered the house hand-in-hand. She looked into the kitchen and then walked him through the living-dinning room to the lounge and gasped. “You have been back to Megan to buy more things.”

“Yeah but I didn’t think you’d notice. Um Loretta, I did that after deciding to ask you to move in with me.”

“Then ask,” she said excitedly.

“Things are looking brighter. I think Terry has done enough to get Newcomb Council to let a piling contract.”

“That’s good but ask me what I want to hear.”

“Loretta darling, I’d like you to move in here and share life with me.”

“Yes, yes!” Loretta screamed, hauling Harden to one of the leather sofa’s in the living room.

She slumped on to the sofa, hitched up the hem of her dress high and lifted her ass high, a clear invitation for Harden to remove her panties and get cracking.

Harden licked his lips, pulled the panties down over Loretta’s knees and dove in between her legs.

Delighted to be caught by surprise, Loretta pushed off her panties with her foot and running fingers through Harden’s hair cooed, “Oh my darling boy wants it.”

Harden slurped and ginned, thinking that was an understatement.

They were both thirty-four and sex was a central consideration in their life and they both knew that and knew you got more sex and possibly sex of greater quality by teaming up with someone and extending their interests round that central focus that could only enhance such a union.

Harden looked up at her, juices running off his chin.

“If I’m kicked out of the county you can come to America with me.”

“God are you thinking that while licking me?”


“Oooh, good boy,” Loretta said, squeezing a breast and looking at him fondly. And why do you think that?”

“Your pussy has to be just the very best and I also am fired up by you.”

Loretta’s eyes rolled up and her body shook.

“Jesus,” she gasped.

Harden, who’d left a couple of fingers in her, pulled them out dripping and sucked them, staring at her.”

“When can I shift in?” she gasped. “Dad is at the airport waiting for my aunt and uncle to arrive.”

“After we finish here, say in two or three hours.”

Loretta gurgled.

* * *

Almost two years galloped by.

Terry had run a string of women through his home after Loretta had vacated and finally settled on one. Terry and a homely divorcee Molly Holmes were married at a small ceremony in Ambrose Park beside the river six weeks ago. The relationship between Molly and Loretta had begun to thaw since then, much to Terry’s relief.

Loretta’s business selling treated wooden piles for river flood protection work and building excavation sites was booming. After completing the industrial riverbank protection piling contract for the Newcomb Council, her company supplied piles to Harden’s company for three more river-bank protection contacts and it had three land-based crews working on commercial, farm and residential pile-driving contacts.

Ten months after Kin Blake had gone to America she was due to return home. Harden and Loretta had become very friendly with Shirley and Ross and Shirley had backed off Harden after he said he wasn’t interested, having learned from Terry that Shirley, although a lovely woman, had a reputation for ‘spreading it around.”

“You mean her loveliness,” Harden had said slyly. Terry had cuffed him over the ear and said, “No you idiot, she’s promiscuous.”

Working with Ross as a consultant on another project for Newcomb County Harden said he had been thinking of taking Loretta to Chicago to meet his parents.

“Why don’t you and Shirley come with us for say ten days and we’ll bring back Kim with us.”

Ross really didn’t know but minutes after he told Shirley that evening she was banging at Harden’s door. She dashed in kissed him and grabbed Loretta and dance her around the kitchen yelling, “America, America. Here we come. We are going to America with you guys.”

“With whom?” Loretta asked. She looked at Harden who looked sheepish. She said tartly, “Is there something you’ve forgotten to tell me Harden?”

The visit to LA and Chicago went wonderfully well and Kim, her hair now blonde and her mannerisms very sexy, impressed her friends with her faked American accent.

Shirley decided to go blonde as well but Ross said, “No and I mean that Shirley.”

In tears Shirley consulted Loretta who calmed her and said it was an easy fix. All Shirley had to do was to each fortnight over three mothers get her hair tinted slightly and by the time she was blonde Ross wouldn’t have noticed the change.

“Do you believe that?” Shirley asked Harden doubtfully.

Harden could see Loretta behind Shirley give him the sign of a finger across her throat, suggesting he’d be in big trouble unless he lied.

Harden decided he could get by if he eased back on the lie but to accomplish that successfully he’d need a diversion.

“That deception has great possibilities. Is that a new bra?”

Shirley removed her hand from her hair and looked down at her boobs.

“No. Are you suggesting Ross would take greater interest in me if I bought new bras.”

“Higher lift in a tighter bra Shirley, guaranteed to work,” Harden said, not lying.

Next day he came home to find Loretta trying on one of the four new bras she’d purchased. He said “Wow” and moved in to help her adjust the straps.

Three weeks later Loretta received confirmation she was pregnant so they set a wedding date

They were discussing the wedding party when Harden remembered his promise to Neville McEwan at the used machinery and wrecker’s yard.

“I’d like to include your godfather.”

“I don’t have a godfather,” Loretta laughed and then saw the look on Harden’s face.

“Oh god, my unofficial godfather. You have been talking to Neville McEwan. What line has he been spinning you?”

“The poor guy has no one and has been a pal of you father’s since they were at primary school together. He regards you guys as family.”

“Well what he told you is bullshit. Dad owed him money just after I was born and saw how Neville thought I was so cute. So dad offered him the title of unofficial godfather and acceptance would mean the gambling debt was written off. Neville agreed. That’s all there is to it.”

“And Neville has never shown kindness to you since then?”

Loretta was embarrassed.


She said Neville never missed buying her a birthday present, he also gave her a Christmas present and he’d bought her a dress to go to her high school graduation ball and had insisted and picked up the tab at the restaurant on the night she graduated with her masters in education.

“So there is a long-standing connection.”

“Well I was intending to invite him to the wedding providing dad agrees to get Neville cleaned up.”

“Well I’ll not be satisfied with the wedding arrangements unless Neville is one of my groomsmen to partner the maid or matron of honor.”

“Harden there’s no way am I…”

She stopped when she saw Harden’s jaw jut forward.

“Oh I’m wrong about that aren’t I?”


“Well you arrange this with dad and find him a partner. The only woman I know who is old enough is Shirley and I’m not having Neville ending up trying to screw Shirley because after a few drinks she’d probably roll over for him.”

“Loretta, this is a wedding we will plan, not a fuckfest.”

She grinned and told him not to be so rude.

Terry received a triple whammy when he called around, learning his daughter was pregnant, a wedding would be held in six weeks and his pal Neville McEwan would be invited to be best man.

“Neville McEwan?” said Molly with obviously distaste and for the first time Loretta looked at her new stepmother and ‘understanding’ passed between them.

Molly appeared delighted about that. She stood and said to Loretta, “Come on dear, let’s go shopping and choose the engagement present Terry and I can give you.”

As the two women went through the doorway Molly offered the crook of her arm and Loretta closed the gap between them and slipped her arm into it.

Terry gaped, “How the hell did that happen?”

“Dunno,” Harden said going off to pour another whisky for Terry and get another beer for himself. “It could be Loretta has decided to pull in her fangs a bit but perhaps now that she’s pregnant she feels the need to be in touch with an older woman.”

“Yeah a substitute mother desire could be the answer. I really can’t understand why she wants Neville in the wedding party.”

Not feeling the need to explain Harden said, “We want you to take responsibility to get up into acceptable shape for the wedding. Perhaps you could put him though a dry-cleaning machine.”

“”Yeah okay, he’s a pal from way back.”

“Loretta also wants to line up someone as maid or matron of honor to partner him.”

“Me, who do I know like that. I’m married and am not expected to know of other women?”

“Cut the crap pal. Come on, out with it.”

“Well there’s Ba-Ba Lambert, a cocktail waitress I banged a few times. Oh perhaps not. She’s rather coarse and likes full on sex and the messier it is the better for Ba-Ba I mean Rosemary. She won’t do.”

“She sounds perfect Terry. With standards like that she mightn’t notice Neville’s social shortcomings.”

“Oh yeah, good thinking. But if she decides to bang Neville he won’t know what hit him.”

“Perfect Terry. You and I make a good team. What’s Molly like in bed?”

Terry’s eyes lit up. “Man you’re not going to believe this…”

Leave a Reply* Marked items are required