THFWS: The Ballad of Charles and Suki III

THFWS: The Ballad of Charles and Suki III

…Every dog has his day, and every Cat will play…

It might have all been different, but Fate is both a cruel Mistress and a benevolent lover, and Charles and Suki had unfinished business that might have gone unresolved, just to make peace, which would have been a tragedy of missed opportunities…however, some people are blessed by being given no quarter, and in the process Pain leads them to the highest pleasures much too good to be wasted on the weak of spirit, resolve, or courage.

Suki was the most leonine creature Charles had ever met. In fact, if she could have given herself a tongue bath, she would have been the most feline woman to ever live. She was regal, yet unpretentious. She took no amnesty from anyone, and was not inclined to give it. She was not cruel, but she was also not especially merciful…to her, everything had a consequence to it.

There was an unflinchingly sloe-eyed detachment in her demeanor that gave her a calculating, analytical appearance at first glance. She used it to cover her emotions, which boiled very near the surface at times…and she was ruled by her pride.

Of course, she was born in August, and the red highlights in her dark hair against her green eyes often disarmed less secure men and enchanted the boldest of them. She was a lioness at the very core of her nature, and fell in love with Charles because he was strong enough to stand up to her, smart enough not to try to tame her and wise enough to let her choose to be kept, as long as she believed the choice was hers.

She had lost that edge she had when they first met, and complacency, exhaustion and depression had taken over in its place. She resented the fact that Charles had found someone who worshipped his being and spirit long after Suki had become complacent and immune to Charles’ considerable charm and intellect…and this was part of the problem…Charles had not found her, she had found him….

Little did she know that everything that now consumed her every waking thought would merely be a warm-up, or preparation for the Main Event that would put everything back exactly where it was meant to be all along.

She had made desperate overtures to her husband that reeked of her insecurity and desperation, which sabotaged her every move. She hoped to capture his undivided attention even as he was being swept away by the infatuation of this new Crush that left her feeling vulnerable and threatened.

Charles on the other hand would have been ecstatic over the recently renewed vitality in his marriage if he was not forced to feel the barb, the hook that was always there in the form of Suki’s resentments and envy. She could have let the whole thing run its course, whatever that was. As much as Charles would have liked it to be different, he sensed that Jenny was not likely to remain a permanent fixture in his life, and governed his actions accordingly.

Until Suki had come into his life, Charles’ marriages had been consistently impermanent due to a failure to be able to maintain the Romance that he required to give him inspiration and purpose, as well as the energy to balance his side of the equation for her.

In fact, Charles had fallen in Love with Suki on a double date that he and his fiancée went on with a business associate of his while Suki was in town for a family reunion. They had jokingly referred to each other as “Kissing Cousins”  over the years, and were like family to each other because f their parents’ friendship. She had seen many women come and go in Charles’ life and had a crush on him since she was about fourteen…and Charles was thirty…Suki knew all too well what it was like to be the other woman.

The truly great relationships in Charles’ life were with women he never married, and with whom neither he nor she took umbrage, but rather, leave…as in leave of absence…(in his heart, he left the light on, and the door unlocked).

And so it was that Charles never learned to despise those women the way his ex-wives had learned to despise him…and it was not in his nature to carry a grudge, even if he felt better when they were not around.

Suki could have been one of those women, and Charles had expected that there would come a time when she would need to leave him to learn those things he could not teach her, but as neither of them desired it to take place, so apathy and the commonplace displaced romance and adventure.

Little did she know that what would separate them temporarily would unite them in eternity.

Suki’s father had suffered a mild heart attack in Los Angeles, and she immediately flew out to her original home to care for him. It was just as well that she went when she did, because the tension between her and Charles seemed to hang in the very air they breathed, and this opportunity to take her leave would distract her from her desperation.

She had two very good friends who were married to each other, and several former casual lovers in the valley, and although the cocaine was not quite as good as what she and Charles had learned to avoid in Florida, it was as ubiquitous as Mickey Mouse, Coca-Cola, and Jesus Christ on the cross in L.A. and more or less free to a beautiful and exotic woman of mystery such as Suki.

The trick would be in being able to balance her responsibilities against her pleasures.

After about a week of tending to her dad almost night and day, she began to steal away once her father was asleep to spend her evenings with her friends, the Bickersons. They had been together longer than she and Charles had even known each other, although Suki and Christy had been best friends since childhood.

She was petite with a porcelain complexion and corn-silk hair. The had shared a few lovers over the years in a very safe plain-vanilla sort of way that earmarks many a ménage a trois, and there had been no direct sexual contact between Suki and Christy, although they both joked about the possibilities many times over the years.

Keith was tall, had shoulder-length curly brown hair and looked like a roadie for the Grateful Dead. He was the archetypical southern Californian, “ ‘fer sure”. He had a rich, deep broadcaster’s voice and a gentle, humorously infectious way about him, although he and Suki had never been even slightly attracted to each other, which was just as well.

They had picked her up at the airport when she flew into LAX and got her settled in before they took her to the hospital. There was something different about the way they acted this time however, but Suki couldn’t quite put a finger on what it was….

It certainly wasn’t how they acted toward each other, because they were always, first and foremost the Bickersons in that they lived up to the full irony of their name in a way that was tragically comical. They could argue about the color of the sky on a cloudless day, and it almost seemed to be the undercurrent that fueled their relationship despite the fact that they barely recognized the obvious, and did not seem to be as adversely affected by their ongoing adversarial discourse as was those around them.

Finally, late one night they told Suki of their intentions to pursue a threesome with her. Although it was fraught with a few accommodations that had to be made for their generally neurotic relationship, it started with Suki and Christy exploring each other while Keith watched for as long as he could stand it, which was to say, not for very long.

Keith was well endowed and Suki and Christy treated him like an animated sex toy until he was completely spent, only to return their attentions back to pleasuring each other. It had a galvanizing effect on the both of them.

Although Suki was as indifferent as she had always been toward Keith, he was suddenly mesmerized by her to the point that he actually called Charles late one night to apologize for having overlooked this incredibly captivating creature for so long, and that although she happened to be Charles’ wife, he felt compelled to remark to him what a lucky guy he was.

Later that night, he told Suki he thought he was falling in love with her.

Wham! Like a bullet through the brain, she recalled her feelings when she intercepted the e-mail in which Jenny had asked Charles if she had told him she loved him today…and she realized she had done nothing to provoke it any more than Charles had, and that it is never wrong for anyone to tell you that they love you.

It disquieted her enough to prompt her to call Charles at five AM to tell him about it. She was grateful that he understood, but uneasy that he was so supportive and encouraging about it. Did nothing effect jealousy in Charles? Why not? She knew he cared, even if he didn’t mind…but why not? Why would jealousy be the way you express to someone that you love them?

Little did she know that this was only the beginning of her enlightenment.

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