This is a story that I have started in order to dip into it as time allows. It has not been offered for publication but is aimed at the Mills and Boon type market. I have included the start of the story. Please remember the copyright implications.

A Story

By Paul Hurley

Chapter 1.

Jane turned the corner of the pillow to lift her head slightly. She felt relaxed in the cool darkness; her body still tingled from the attention that it had just received. Richard was a good lover and between them they reached the sky. He had lived with her for a year now and that was the first long relationship in her 24 years of life and 7 years of sexual maturity, a relationship that she was happy in. The flat was hers and everything in it, as a schoolteacher with promotion to head of department taking effect the following Monday she had a lot to be grateful for. Her Head, the fearsome Mr Blake, had informed her of the promotion, he had added that she deserved it and any luck that she had enjoyed had been made. She had made it and was to be the youngest departmental head in the school.

The lights of a passing car shed their light across the ceiling and Richard stirred in his sleep, gently she lifted her head to look at him, careful not to wake him. His blond hair was even paler against the white of the pillow. The room was still and but for his regular breathing, quiet. The bed smelt of clean sheets with the faint background smell of sex, and something else. She had not noticed it before but there was definitely another faint smell. She leaned closer to him, if the room were not so still and quiet she would never have smelt it but it was definitely there. CK perfume, it was not a brand that she used, but she knew the smell and he certainly didn’t use it.

Quietly she slid out of bed, opened the wardrobe door and scooped out two of his jackets. Taking them through to the lounge she started to search the pockets. Never before had she had cause to mistrust Richard, he was ever attentive to her, he was the PT instructor at the school; she thought that she knew his every move. Wallet containing cash and credit cards, bills stuck in the side pockets, a quick check revealed that they were from the supermarket they had visited the previous day. ‘You’re a fool,’ she told herself quietly as she started to feel guilty at what she was doing. The jackets held no evidence to suggest that Richard was anything but a faithful partner. Silently she slid them back into the wardrobe and returned to bed.

An hour later she was still awake, the demons of suspicion gnawed away inside her head. Who had he seen on that course last week? Had he really gone to meet an old school friend that time, she felt her chest tightening as each ‘suspicious’ incident came back to her. She decided for her own peace of mind to investigate further.

His Citroen was parked in the drive behind her car and she started to search it. Until she pulled opened ashtray she had found nothing. Then she found the note; she remembered what her police officer friend had once said. They always leave some evidence behind. Well, she had found Richards. Her stomach churned and tears filled her eyes as she read the simple words on the piece of cardboard. ‘The Services 5pm LY.’

 That had to mean the motorway services nearby, what a good place to meet she thought, how handy and useful to have so many strangers to mingle with. Avoiding the strong temptation to kick the car, she went back into the house. In the kitchen she switched on the kettle. So many people in this situation go off the deep end and do things that they regret, at the same time they never find out what happened but she was made of stronger stuff. She sat back to drink the strong coffee and weigh up the evidence. The note would indicate that the writer was almost certainly from the school as the cardboard had been torn from an exercise book. CK perfume, who uses that? Gill, or Gilly as she liked to be called, no, surely not that old man-eater, surely Richard could do better than that.

From the top of the TV set in the lounge she collected the congratulations card from the school staff. Well done Jane and well deserved. Gilly. No forensic handwriting expert was needed here. That was the old bags handwriting for sure, despite the empty feeling, Jane was quite proud of herself. Now he could go to her, now he could go and join his name that had probably been scratched with all the others on her bedpost. Slowly and quietly she walked into the bedroom. Sitting on the edge of the bed she ran her fingers through his hair causing him to wake up. His hands came from under the covers and slid around her.

“You’re insatiable,” he whispered drowsily.

“Am I? Am I the most insatiable woman that you have ever been with?” She continued to stroke his hair and not changing the tone of her voice she continued silkily. “Or is the lovely Gilly?”

Slowly his hands slid off her waist and she switched on the table light. Looking down at his face she saw the emotions chasing across it, she could read them like a book. ‘Does she know, does she suspect, can I talk my way out of this?’ to the definitive, ‘Oh shit.’ She continued to smile at him with what must have been a look of contempt on her face. “How long has it been going on?”

“What, how long…”

“Answer me Richard, how long?”

His facial expression changed to one of acceptance. “Just off and on, not like you Jay, it was only for the sex.”

She didn’t know how to take that, should she be grateful? “You have just ten minutes to get your stuff together and leave my life forever. After this deadline, if you are still here I will do as all others in this situation do, I will hit you over the head with a chair and trash your gear. Now sod off out of my life forever. Go back to your addled old woman and enjoy.” It took him five minutes to leave the house and as the sound of his car faded she sat on the bed and cried, she cried for herself, for what they had and for what his stupid ness had taken away. Then she changed the sheets and settled down for what was left of the night.