“Time to Go to Bed”, A Ficlet (PG-13), July 1, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace, (Post #594) (all rights reserved)
(Dedicated to Glady Roland)
“Time to Go to Bed”, a Ficlet — Prologue
A phrase, an image, a thought, and a fictional story emerges. These random musings are not rooted in reality. But rather, they spring from a wish to see everyone in a loving relationship. And my characters are at my writing whims. So they comply–at least, until, it is time to go to bed.
“Time to Go to Bed”, a Ficlet
It had been a grueling first Saturday of double performances with his new play–a matinee and then the evening show. However live theatre–as opposed to dead theatre? he often queried people bemusedly–had firmly planted itself in his heart and became his first love again. Well, theatre was his first love professionally.
Personally, his first love is a tiny spitfire of an actress who jolted him out of his easy going complacent lifestyle. He had let things drift for so long while pursuing new career challenges, that he had neglected to carve out space for someone to call his own and he to be their own, someone whom he would see every day–whether he or she were in a good mood or not. Kind of like that film The Defiant ones, wherein two escaped prisoners are chained together and having to make it work. And he and his wife do make it work, through love and cooperation–just without the chains, or handcuffs.
The modern relational term is partner, but their loving bond is so much more than that. And he also does not think that they complete each other as some people phrase it. They were both fully grown and mature adults when they met and eventually married. He did not know that he needed anyone until she came into his life like a cough inducing bellow of stage smoke and she altered what he thought that he wanted in life.
And she didn’t make it easy for him either. She was aloof, petulant, demanding, vain, needy, resourceful, humorous, kind, considerate, loving, and quietly sexy–so like him. They were and are a combustible combination as a couple. They met when they had worked together two years ago on a play. He observed that she was being chased by one of her American friends from drama school–but she didn’t let herself get caught. She had been in only a few relationships before–two long term monogamous ones. Despite her being in her twenties and somewhat of a free spirit, she didn’t sleep around. He liked that about her. Not that he thought her pure, but that she was discerning.
However, once he realized that he liked her in a particular way, the problem was would her discernment be favorable to him, or would she weed him out? And he supposes that he didn’t help himself out in the romance department by not chasing her. Pursuit was not his style. He would greet her cordially each performance day–they had a very good working relationship. He hoped that it would be something to build upon. But he failed to ask her out for drinks after, or to suggest they have lunch on their day off. These would be the usual openers to explore getting to know each other better. He smiled at her, she smiled back.
But neither of them had made the first move toward each other dating wise during their play’s run–and they parted as friendly colleagues. So, he thought that she had made her choice–and that it wasn’t him. Apparently not. Because quite unexpectedly several months later, she turned up at a cocktail fundraiser for the theatre and she made a beeline for him. It is 8’oclock in the evening at the packed theatre reception. As usual, everyone is queuing up to the bar. She spies him standing off in a corner by a larger palm tree while sipping his wine. She walks up behind him and gently pokes him in the ribs which startles him.
She: “Come here often, bloke?” She smiles up at him impishly. She thinks that he cleans up nicely–so glad that the beard is gone, but stubble remains.
He: God she looks good in that champagne colored cocktail dress number. “Free food and drink and I’m there.” He parries with a smile.
They both laugh. “Ha ha ha ha ha!”
She: “Why don’t I recognize anyone here tonight?” She looks around the room forlornly.
He: “What? Over there is Bernard, and Sally is talking to Bridget at the food buffet.” I point out our various colleagues to her. “What more do you want?”
That’s a loaded question.
She: “Uh huh.” She smiles up at him sweetly. “So how long do we have to stay before we can duck out of here?” She asks boldly.
He: “We?” I feign surprise.
She: “If I’m going to bail out on this event, I need an accomplice–in case we’re caught.”
He: “Oh? Safety in numbers?” I ask bemusedly.
She: “Something like that.”
He: “And what is our reason for leaving early?” Me not wanting to appear disrespectful to our theatre hosts since we do support this theatrical company’s goals of bringing great art to a wider audience. She stares at me with those bewitching brown eyes of hers.
She: “I thought we might go dancing before it’s time to go to bed.” I stare at him challengingly. Just what is Mr. Tall, Dark, and Handsome going to say or do now?
He: My jaw opens slightly. Is she propositioning me? “Dancing?” She nods her head. Then I can’t resist pondering. “Is that … a metaphor?”
Maddeningly, she replied.
She: “We’ll see.”
So we left the fundraiser–and two donation checks–then headed to a nightclub to dance between the chanteuse’s ballads. We salsaed and waltzed and slow danced and tangoed. I had forgotten how fun partner dancing could be–and she was fun. After a lovely evening, I escorted her home, kissed her cheek, and wished her a good evening at her doorstep. However, she had other ideas and she pulled me into her flat and kissed me senseless. I love modern women!
We quickly shed ourselves of our outer clothes and were down to our undies. She had a lovely matching nude satin bra and panties set on, I was wearing grey long leg briefs. We ended up kissing with abandon on her too short couch–because her bedroom was too far away. Then we came up for air.
She: “God! I’ve wanted to kiss you for so long.” I nibble on his neck as I wrap my arms around him and trail my hands down his muscular back and slip them into his briefs and cup his bum in my hands.
He: “Hmmm.” I growl with her kissing me where my neck meets my shoulder–one of my errogenous zones. And then with the whole bum grab thing she did, I was a goner. “Ha ha ha! What took you so long–to kiss me?” I clarify.
But I am too eager to wait for her reply as I kiss her senseless. It is only when my kisses trail down her neck to her shoulders that her mouth is relatively free for speech. Though my caresses of her also render her speechless for several moments.
She: “Ahhhh!” I sigh deeply as he finds it. Who says British men don’t pounce, they envelop you? This man is a tiger! “Ohhhhh!” I tremble with his caresses.
I unhook her bra and remove it–with my other hand. My breathing stops as I gaze upon her loveliness. Beauty such as hers should be painted, sculpted, worshipped, and adored. But I don’t say that because I’m kissing her again just now and my lips and mouth are more pleasantly engaged. Our arms and legs and bodies are now sweetly entangled. I am quite aroused–as she can no doubt tell with our bodies pressed together, but still separated by our underwear. I gaze down at her. I am already past the point of no return, but I feel that I should at least make the obligatory offer to step back before we make love.
He: “Are you certain that you want to do this?” I ask with trepidation. If she says no, then I must respect her decision and leave her be. And if she says yes …?
She: I look up at him perplexed. Does he want us to stop? “Are you …?” Then I change my response mode to a When Harry Met Sally moment. “Yes, yes, yes, yes!”
I happily recall us making love that first night, and then some. She had a box of condoms in her bathroom, clever girl. We spent the whole of the next day and the next several weeks acquainting ourselves with each other–in bed and around town. I felt like a new man–her man. I wouldn’t admit this out loud–because it might seem overly sentimental–but I was and I am proud to be with her. She is truly the most amazing woman I know.
So six months after we met, we married. And a year after that, our endlessly fascinating baby son David came along. David is now six months old and my wife stays home with him while she is still breast feeding him. And I am working in a play. Our deal is that when David is weaned, it is my turn to be home with our son while she performs in a play. It is an amicable arrangement that I would not have thought that I would enter into as a man in my selfish forties before I met and married my wife. But selfishness goes out the window when you marry, and then even more so when you become a father.
I must tell you that tired as I am right now after today’s double performances, knowing that I have my wife and son to go home to is an absolute joy. And tonight, I don’t even have to wait–because she and baby David came to pick me up after the late performance. They wait discreetly down the block as they sit in our car, watching me greet the fans with autographs, smiles, selfies, hugs, as we exchange a few words.
Then when the fan crowd disperses, my wife gets out of our car and she walks over to me with a sleeping baby David in her arms. I hold out my arms to accept baby David and to embrace my wife. When she hands David to me, he instantly cuddles to my shoulder and neck, latching on like he will never let go. I think David’s baby grip could challenge anyone’s for strength and tenacity. Then I gently rub David’s back and he makes contented noises in his sleep. I lean down and my wife and I kiss lingeringly.
She: “Tired?” She caresses my face.
He: “Yeah. Time to go to bed.” We gaze longingly, lovingly into each others’ eyes.
She: “Let’s go home.” She smiles radiantly up at me.
And I smile tenderly back at her. Time to go home.
N.B.: The story logo original image is by GladyRoland and is a picture of British actor Richard Armitage at the Stage Door of The Old Vic for his play The Crucible, and was found at https://twitter.com/gladyroland/status/483591299636158464