Sunday, August 14, 2011

Comments - and Serial

Well - looks like that sale that Lulu offered is over.    Thank you to all that participated - but I discovered that those generous buggers were offering the sale out of MY cut!  But I was pleased - it was mostly my blog readers that took adadvantage of the sale price and I was pleased at that.  A couple of things though.

1.  You guys that bought the book?   I still owe you two stories each - write me at bdub2m@gmail with the number from the back cover - and two stories that I show for sale at - and I'll send them to you free of charge.

2.  The download version seems to be doing very well.  Most took advantage of the sale price - but I'd like to point out that even at the regular price of $6.99 it's still a bargain.  (I've sold those stories since about 1994 for about $5.00 apiece and never raised the price - so I'm basically selling three stories at less than half price each.)

I'd also LOVE review of the stories I sold as 'comments'. I will NOT edit the comments - honest!
  Would you buggers get off your ass?  I've had two entries - and three 'promises'.  C'mon - it isn't that hard!

Serial:  Here's part 2 of   "Real Husband's don't Cry."

Real Husbabds Don’t Cry

Part 2

Joan looked ruefully at me.  "That MAY be what a large part of the problem is all about."  She started when Eileen interrupted and scolded her playfully. "I told you that it might be a mistake on your part Joan!  You're not really giving the poor dear a chance to participate . ."
"Participate?" I blurted, more confused than ever.  "Participate in what, exactly?"

The two women looked at each other.  Joan sighed and ignored my question. "You could be right Eileen.  Why don't you go ahead?  Maybe you can explain what's going on better than I can. He may be not able to make sense out of what's going on in MY head."  She shook her head and laughed lightly.  "Damned if I know what's going on!  Maybe when you finish, I'll have an idea!"

Eileen laughed in the same manner as she saw my face.  "Stop looking so serious Steve!  It's not that serious – well, not life threatening perhaps – but Joan thinks that both of you need to get your heads together and examine your relationship . ."
"Huh?  I don't see anything wrong . ."  I started defensively, but Eileen held up a hand to shush me.  "Please Steve?  Do you think you could let me explain?  Let me talk for a little while?"
I shrugged.  "Sure.  Fire away."

She nodded and took a sip of her drink.  "First of all Steve?  You must understand that though Joan is American through and through, she was raised by Scottish parents? They may be a long time dead, but they were very influential in her way of thinking."
"Makes sense to me.  I have seen certain signs of that over the years." I admitted.
She nodded gravely.  "Rightly or wrongly, that's a society that is very gender orientated.  A man does his thing, and a woman does hers.  Both sexes have distinct roles to play in a marriage.  A few weeks ago, she was very jealous – thinking you'd been sleeping with another woman."
I shrugged.  "I know all that!   But we got that all straightened out . ."  I started when she shook her head and raised a had to stop me. "That's not at issue here!" she said.  "What IS an issue is that she hit you!"

"Oh dear!" I said, and cast a reproachful look at Joan.
She almost looked contrite.  "I'm sorry dear – but I respect Eileen's thinking a lot and wanted her advice.  I couldn't think of anything else to do." 
"Well, she DID think she had a reason." I commented weakly, turning back to Eileen.
She pursed her lips then said.  "Hit you a number of times.  Not just once.  That not correct?"
I took my time in thinking out my answer, but finally admitted softly.  "Yes.  She was pretty mad."
"Were you at fault?  Honestly?"
I snuck a look at Joan.  "No."  I said slowly.  "But I could see . . "
"But you ended up saying that you were sorry – right?  Even though you were faultless?" Eileen rode over me quickly.
"Yes.  Seemed like the only thing to do."  I said, with a little pride in my voice at my obvious forbearance.
"Oh. To stop her hitting you?  I thought it might be that?"  She cocked her head in my direction and her look was disbelieving, to say the least.  There was something in her voice that was disturbing me.

"Well – that did apply, I guess."  I admitted with a rueful smile.  "She DID hurt, you know."
"You didn't think of hitting her back?  Defending yourself?"
"Well I don't hit women." I said, straightening my back.
"Don't defend yourself against them either?" She was quite caustic with this. "Don't hit them back, even when they're giving you a good whacking?"
"Well?"  I didn't know what to answer to this.
She continued, making sure her point was being understood.  "Matter of fact, didn't she wrestle you to the floor?  Twist your arms?"

I blushed.  "Yes."
"Twisted your arms all the way up your back?"
"Made you cry?" her voice was getting a mocking tone to it as she heavily inflected the last word.
"Oh Jesus Eileen.  Must we go through this?" I sighed heavily, admitting to the truth of her words.

She looked at me, suddenly compassionate.  "I'm just trying to make a point.  It's something that has bothered Joan since that night."
"Bothered HER?"  It was my turn to be amazed and caustic.   "It was ME that got the worst of that encounter you know!"
Eileen nodded.  "Yes.  She was totally in the wrong – and knows it."
"Well?" I asked.  "What in all hell is the matter?"
"A separate point?"  Eileen said and glared a little at me.  "But I don't like profane nor  dirty language nor blasphemy.  You've sworn a few times in the last moment.  Please stop."
"But Joan uses it all . ."
"That's different!  I just don't like you using it.  Do I make myself clear?" She was very stern now.
"I'm sorry Eileen."  I muttered.

Her expression changed immediately.  She smiled at Joan.  "Was that a good case in point?"
Joan laughed and shook her head as she did.  "Yes.  I think so."
I looked at both of them, perplexed. "What on earth are you two talking about?"
"That's part of the problem darling.  You don't SEE what is going on!  Don't see what's happening in front of your nose!" Joan said, shaking her head.

Eileen saw my look.  "Dear?  You just allowed me, a guest, to chastise you for using bad language in your own home?"
"Yes?  I guess."
"You should have told her to go and piss up a rope!"  Joan broke in.  "Anyone gonna find fault with you in this hose – it's ME!" she added dogmatically.

Eileen shook her head ruefully.  Spoke to me in a kind tone.  "Dear?  What I'm trying to point out is that your wife beat you up – made you cry.  When you should have stood up for yourself?  You didn't!"
"Well, I don't see any need to make a fuss about things." I said truculently.  "Want to keep things pleasant."
She shrugged.  "Made things pleasant enough that you started helping her in the kitchen – doing HER job for her?"

I could feel myself getting defensive. "Just trying to help out.  Nothing wrong with that, surely."
"Let her put you in one of her aprons?  Did the serving and clearing up?"
"Seemed okay at the time."  I mumbled.

"Don't you realize?" She was starting to sound aggravated.  "That an apron is a sign of domesticity?"
"No harm in that – surely?" I argued.  "Lots of guys wear them!"
She shook her head gently and reprovingly.  "Maybe so.  But the type you're wearing at the moment?  A pretty apron?"   There were elements of a sneer in her voice now. "All sorts of frills and flounces?  And you've gradually been 'helping' her more and more every night?  Serving drinks and dinner?  Doing dishes?"
I blushed even more but didn't answer.
"Then tonight – she buys you – all for yourself – a beautiful, feminine, apron – and you come waltzing in here with it – a pretty bow by the way – and not only that, but you KEEP it on in front of a new guest?  Don't argue one bit or try to take it off?  Serve us ladies drinks?  Don't you feel kinda strange looking and acting that way?"

I realized that it was time for complete truthfulness.  "I know it's not right – honest!  But I don't know what else to do!"
She saw my honesty and nodded a little in approval.  "That's more like it.  So you're confused, right?"
I had to laugh.  "Got THAT right, aunt!"
She smiled in return. "Would you believe me if I said that Joan is just as confused as you are?"
I shrugged.  "Long as we're being honest?  The answer is a resounding "NO".  She seems very sure of herself.  Wish I was that sure, to be honest."

She looked at Joan before she continued.  Then she lowered her voice into a more confidential mode. "Like I said?  Joan was brought up to believe that a husband has HIS place in a marriage, and the wife has hers.  She has always acted on this belief – at least until recently."
"Yeah!"  I said with a trace of bitterness.  "The night she whacked me!"
Eileen nodded her head once in definite confirmation of what I'd just said.  Then she added.  "And then you proceeded to confuse her by not whacking her back!  She was wrong – dead WRONG – but you ended up apologizing to her and then, instead of getting your own back – as she'd been brought up to believe that you should?  What did you DO?  You cried!  Like an apologetic wife being punished by her man!"

I looked at her in amazement.  "You saying I should have whacked her?"
She didn't bat an eyelash,  "Absolutely!"
"But . .but . .but . ."  I stammered.
"She THUMPED you – did she not?"  Eileen asked with a smile.  "And all you thought of doing was to cry?  You can't possibly think that that puts you in a very masculine light, does it?  Not to her, considering the way she was brought up?"
"I guess not."  I replied.
She nodded her agreement.  "So speaking loosely?  Don't you SEE?  She was the masculine partner that night – and you played the feminine role?  The weak little, bullied, wife?"

I looked at the two women who were gazing directly at me as if examining a strange insect under a microscope. Licked my lips.  "Maybe so.  But that was then, Eileen.  This is NOW!"

Joan suddenly stood up.  "Steve darling?  This conversation has gone on enough.  There was a Golf magazine I was reading in the Sitting room earlier on and I left it there.  Would you mind getting it for me?"

After our recent conversation?  I felt like telling her to stuff it, but to tell the truth I felt a pang of fear run through me?  Fright?  Cowardice?  Found myself consoling myself with the thought that now was a good time to get away from the conversational topic we'd been having.  After all I wasn't comfortable with what was going on.  The deprecating smile I put on was phony, but it seemed to pass muster.  "Alright Joan.  The Golf magazine?"

She kept on staring at me but her expression didn't change.  Then she gave me a slight nod. "That's what I said." She commented.
"Very well.  Be right back."  I said, trying very hard not to scurry away from her and her imperious visage and into the Sitting room.  Quickly, I picked it up and went back to where the ladies were.  To my surprise, Joan was still standing in the same spot.  She had been saying something to Eileen, but she interrupted whatever she was saying to fix her eyes on me as I approached.

I couldn't help the sickly, weak, smile as I handed the magazine to her.  "Just where you said it would be, dear!"
"Well?" She asked coldly.
"Well Joan?  I don't know what you mean?" I asked deferentially, honestly puzzled.
"Aren't you going to give me a nice curtsey?"  Her tone wasn't unfriendly, but decidedly mocking.
"Aw C'MON Joan!" I exclaimed. "I think this has gone far enough!"

To my consternation she did nothing for a few seconds – then laughed raucously!
"Had you going for a minute there, didn't I darling?" Then she turned her back and went back to her seat.  Feeling dismissed, and not having the slightest idea of what to say in response, I left the room.

I had no idea what I was going to do, but heard Eileen behind me. "Don't think any of us want to have coffee now, do you?" she asked.
"Had forgotten all about it."  I admitted.
She cocked her head to one side. "Maybe you should go back in and ask Joan?"

There was a tone in her voice that I couldn't quite place.  Wasn't mockery – I was pretty sure of that, but there were undertones there that I couldn't place.
"Look Eileen?  I'm sorry that this hasn't been much of a welcome for . ." I started, but her look told me right way that I was wrong.
"There's nothing wrong here with my welcome," she interrupted me.  "Joan asked me to come and help her and I can see that I can maybe be of help."
"Ha Ha!" I said, somewhat sarcastically.  "She asked you to come and help HER?  It's ME that needs some help around here if you want the truth."

She surprised me by patting my forearm gently.  "That's talking perfect truth Steve. I've been out of the psychology business for some years now, but it's easy to see that both of you are undergoing some change in the relationship – and you're BOTH at sea."
"Well . . .?"  I started, but she interrupted me once again.
"It's as plain as the nose on your face!" she said.  "Neither one of you can make up your mind what you want from the other – Joan especially!"

I was intrigued.  "Joan?  I don't see what you mean."
She tutted. "That curtsey business we just saw was a perfect case in point."
I felt my face show ignorance.  "Curtsey business?"  I asked blankly.
"Don't give me THAT nonsense!" she said sternly.  "Joan indicated that she wanted you to curtsey to her when told you to get her magazine."
"Oh THAT?  Ha ha!  She was only kidding." I explained.
"Maybe.  But there was a lot of seriousness in her.  That's what's bugging me.   Joan wants to be your boss . . ."
"That's obvious!" I interrupted.  "But she doesn't REALLY want me to curtsey.  I'm a MAN for goodness sake!"

She looked at me with curiosity alight in her eyes.  "You think she was kidding?"
I found myself swallowing.  "Yes.  For goodness sake Eileen!  Men don't curtsey their wives!"
"Men don't wear pretty chiffon aprons with pretty bows in back.  Men don't go and do their wives bidding.  Men don't . ."
"Please Eileen.  Enough.  Please?"  I asked softly.

She paused, a little breathlessly.  "I'm sorry.  Joan's already asked me for help, but the two of you are driving me NUTS!  She tells you what to do – then laughs and says she was kidding.  You – who should be telling her where to get off – stand there like a deer in the headlights of a car.  Obviously don't know whether to piss or get off the pot!  She tells you to curtsey her for goodness sake – and you stand there looking helpless!  I wish you'd make up your mind!  Either curtsey her – or tell her to get lost!"  Then she made that peculiar tutting noise again.  "You don't know HOW to curtsey properly, do you?"

I shook my head.  "No.  I think she's crazy, but do you think I should? Please tell me Eileen."  I heard the helpless tone in my voice.
She shook her head in some bewilderment.  "See what I MEAN? You're sounding as if you wouldn't MIND!"

Then she thought again.  You DO see what I'm getting at, don't you?  You're just as bad as she is!   No.  I don't think you should curtsey her – but let me ask you this.  Be honest with me now.  Suppose Joan really wants you to curtsey to her – REALLY wants you to.  Do you think you'll DO it?"
"No!"  I started, then stopped. "I don't know."  I admitted honestly after a pause while I thought.

"So? Don't you think she might end up teaching you how to curtsey to her?  Laugh at you while she did so?  Mock you while she did?  Would you STAND for that?"
"No!  Of course not!  Come ON, Eileen!"
She stared at me.  "Honest?   Be honest now!"
I shuddered.  "Maybe I would. I don't KNOW.   But it's a thought."
She shook her head.  "I'd say it was a pretty sure thing.  Now suppose you admit that curtseying her is what she has in mind for you?  Don't you think it might take the wind out of her sails if you curtseyed her nicely before she even started to bully you?  Take the wind out of her sails a wee bit?"
"Oh."  I said.  "I see what you're getting at."

"It's not difficult to do nicely," she said, coming to stand in front of me.  "Take each hand and hold your apron out a little at the sides."
"Aw Eileen!" I groaned.
"Come on now!  Stop fooling around!"
"Like this?" I asked, doing as she said.
"Not bad.  You're pulling the apron out just a little too much.  Let it back a little."
"Like this?" I was blushing.
"Perfect!  Now hook your left foot in behind your right.  Good!  Now bend at the knees a little and as you go down, spread your apron a little."

And, I curtsied to my aunt as she smiled at me.  "Very good!  Now stand up straight, let go your apron and pretend I'm Joan! Can you do that?"
Shamefaced, I nodded, completely unable to meet her eyes.
"Good!  Remember to do as I told you.   But keep your back straight. Don't slouch.  And answer me!"
"Huh?" I asked, but she didn't reply.  Instead she regarded me imperiously.  "That magazine I told you to get me.  Will you get it dear?"

Now I knew what she was doing!  I curtsied!  I did!  Through dry lips I answered.  "Yes dear!" As I acted the servant - the maidservant I was becoming.
"Not bad!"  Eileen nodded approval.  "But I don't think that 'dear' would be the proper term for you if you're curtseying.  Do it again.  This time – use Ma'am or Mistress!"
"Aw Eileen!  You think that necessary?" I complained weakly.
"Of course.  Just stop arguing stupidly.  Come on!  Do as you're told!"  She was getting impatient.

It was as if I were losing any masculine sense I had with each curtsey.  A short time later she had finished with me and I was responding just like any well trained maid.  Lightly, Eileen finally patted me on the cheek.  "There, that wasn't TOO bad, was it?"
"It was awful Eileen!" I said.

She smiled.  "All the same, it was very nicely done dear.  Naturally, I don't really expect you to have to curtsey Joan – but it's nice to know that you can do it – do it prettily as a matter of fact!  But don't you feel better?"
She smiled and patted me again as I mumbled.  "Not really – but I guess it might make things a little easier if she starts getting bloody minded again!"

Then she smiled, but grumbled a little. "Wish that I could get her to agree as easily!"
"Agree to what – exactly?"  I had to ask.
"If she would just make up her mind as to what she really wants – to be the man of the house - or whatever."
"Hey c'mon Eileen – that's getting close to the bone!"  I argued.  "I'm STILL here – and I'm not exactly chopped liver you know!"

Her eyes were like searchlights as she turned them on me with a disbelieving look.  "I admit that I'm guessing but are you saying that Joan couldn't – could NOT - be the man of this house if she wanted?"
I forced a laugh.  "Well don't you think that she's missing some necessary equipment?"
She actually came close to sniggering and took a step towards me. "You mean that she doesn't have a penis?"
I blushed before I answered. "Well.  If you want to put it THAT way."

"Oh Steve!" She laughed.  "A penis is only a sort of sign.  The man of the house is the stronger and the smarter of the two, and let's face it.  She's tougher than you are – both mentally and physically.  Got you started doing the girly things around the house some time ago.  Now she even has you wearing pretty little aprons.  She's indicating what she wants, just doesn't seem to want to follow through.  You, on the other hand are starting to show how compliant you are – Joan's little lamb so to speak."

She smiled gently at me, then added. "She doesn't have a penis – but you don't have breasts – though with a little padding – and make some attempts to make yourself pretty for her?  I'm SURE you'd make a nice wife!"
I was staring at her.  "But . ."
"Some padding on your side.  A dildo on hers?  Just a few wee things like that – and who do you think would be best equipped to play the man of the house then?"

My face was on fire.  "I think this is crazy Eileen.  Don't think that I want to hear any more!"
She shrugged. "Up to you my dear.  I'm only trying to help you and Joan get along." Then she blinked at me. "But don't you think she'll be wondering what happened to her magazine?"
"Oh SHIT!   I forgot all about that!" I started to hurry away, but heard her voice at my back.  "I really WAS trying to make a point before when I spoke to you about bad language, but if I were you dear?  I'd try and smooth it out a little.  Not really proper, you know?"
I really didn't pay any attention to her.

#     #     #

Joan was sitting at the dressing table, brushing her long lustrous hair – a nightly habit she was trying to establish.  She did have beautiful hair but frankly, I'd never seen any difference whether she brushed it or not.  I was changing into my pajamas, but could see her reflection in the mirror and knew she could see me.

"Well?  Aren't you going to say anything?" she asked.
"About what?" I asked innocently.
"About our guest."  She smiled.  "Sometimes Steven, you can be so DENSE!  I've been waiting and waiting to hear what you had to say about her."

I shrugged.  "I don't know what you want me to say?  She's a nice lady and I'm sure she'll be an excellent houseguest.  Is that what you expected?"
I saw her reflection nod in agreement.  "Yeah.  But don't you find her kinda opinionated?"
I laughed.  "Yes.  Run in the family, does it?"
She sniffed theatrically. Then smiled.  "She DOES have her own ideas about things, doesn't she."
"You got THAT right!" I agreed.
She laughed again.  "Even telling ME what I'm doing wrong!"
"How DARE she!" I laughed.  "Everybody knows that you're perfect!"

Her face grew thoughtful.  "She keeps telling me that I don't know my own mind.  That I should be more consistent!"
I answered sarcastically.  "The cheek of her!   Maybe you should tell her to leave?"
She giggled.  "Silly!  No!  After all, I asked her here for her advice – and I have the funny feeling that she's right in what she says."
I was more honest now. "Huh!  Seems to me that you know your own mind very well.  I don't see any signs of you ever shilly-shallying about!"
I saw her eyebrows arch.  "You really mean that?"
"You got THAT right honey!" I said definitely, pulling back the bed covers prior to jumping into bed.

"Well then Steven?  Don't get into bed just yet.  Why don't you come over here instead and brush my hair."  She smiled gently into the mirror.  "My arms are getting tired."
I put on my very best imitation of a Scottish accent.  "Urr ye daft wumman?  Got all demented huv ye?"  Then I looked at her reflection. "Sound like your aunt Eileen?"
"Steven?  You are as Scottish as I am demented.  So would you just come over here and brush my hair for me? Do as I ask?"

"You ARE kidding?" I asked.
All humor was now gone from her face and was replaced by a kind of curious sternness. She didn't reply to my question, just shook her head gently from side to side, then crooked her arm that was holding the brush around her neck so that the brush was now pointed at me.  "Come along!" she said quietly.

Apart from the obvious embarrassment of being told what to do by my wife, the brushing of her hair was quite pleasant.  After a few brusque, yet kind enough, comments from her I found myself standing behind her, with my feet together, brushing her hair with long strokes.  Even though I should have known better I finally spoke after about five minutes.
"That enough dear?"
"Just be quiet please.  I'll let you know when you can finish."  My eyes dropped subserviently as she stared into them from the mirror and I continued to brush for another few minutes.  "Very nice!" She finally said and held her hand up for the brush.  I placed it there and she laid it down on the dressing table.

"Bed?"  I asked in a funny way – sort of asking permission.
"Of course!" She answered standing up and turning towards me. "But take my negligee off, would you darling?  Hang it up for me?"
I licked my lips and, as she closed in on me, undid the bow tying the peignoir at her neck clumsily.  She smiled softly and turned her back so that it was obvious that I was to take it off.  I did so, then went to the closet where she kept her robes and hung it up.  When I turned back, she hadn't moved.

"My MY!" she said.  "Is that a nice little erection I see?  Come here darling!"
Blushing, I did as she asked.  Then she took a gentle hold of my erection. "Can't let THIS go to waste, can we?" She was giggling now.  "You blush SO sweetly darling.  For some reason, I'm al randy as well. Let's go!"
And without letting go of me, she led me over to the bed where I'd pulled the covers back earlier on, then she laid me on my back.
"Yes! I think I like this!" she purred as she came down on top of me.

#     #     #

End of Part 2


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