Weeks go by and Sophie and I are fully settled into our new apartment. Despite my initial worries, we have not heard a word from Jeff and the saga seems to be over and done with. Sophie has gone back to her perky, happy go lucky self and I’m relieved we can put that whole mess behind us. Joseph has taken to coming by our place almost every day after work, before going home to his family. Sometimes he stays for five minutes, other times he might stay for dinner.
by Sarah Brooke
Previous episodes of A glimpse into the shadows: An insider’s adventures in the world of escorts:
Last weekend he dropped by when Mike was sat besides me watching a movie on the couch. Sophie wasn’t home, so we all sat around watching the movie and drinking beers that Joe had brought while waiting for her. Mike and Joe talked at length about cars while I tried to listen over them to hear what was going on in the movie. When Sophie arrived home the look on her face when she came in to find us sitting with Joe was priceless. First confusion, then worry, then a big smile. Sophie told me afterwards that Joe has mentioned to her a few times how he lost almost all of his male friends after marriage and how he craves that male companionship sometimes. Mike had a great time talking to him and the idea somehow came up that we should go on a double date.
Sophie, unsure of such a risky endeavour, asked Joseph about it in private. She said he was excited by the prospect but echoed her worries about going out in public together, especially since Joseph knew just about half the town on a first name basis. Joe suggested to her that instead of going out for a double date, why don’t we all go away the next weekend to a little cabin he owns an hour away.
When I asked Sophie what he was going to tell his wife to explain away his absence she shrugged and no more was said of it. I was sure Mike wouldn’t be able to get off work, seeing as he has been forced to work every weekend since starting at his job. An absolute miracle ended up happening and he was given the weekend off. First thing I did upon hearing the great news was to cancel Sophie’s weekend appointments.
It’s Friday night and Joe is driving with Sophie next to him and I’m in the back with Mike, our belongings piled around us in his tiny sports car. There was no room for groceries so we’re going to have to unload all our belongings and then make a run to the nearest grocery store. I’ve never been in a car so fast and my heart has been racing nearly the entire ride to his vacation home. When he sped up even more to pass a slow moving car, my heart was in my throat but Sophie only laughed. I’ve never been so eager to get out of a car in my life. Finally we pull up to the house, although it seems wrong to call it anything but a mansion. Relieved to get out and on solid ground again, as soon as Sophie pushes up her seat and opens the door I stumble out, nearly tumbling over on to her.
“You okay, sweetheart?” Sophie says, letting me lean on her until I’ve recovered my balance.
“You’re all a bunch of lunatics. Especially you, Joe. I was sure we were going to die. There’s still snow on the ground, we could have hit black ice!” I say, maybe slightly over dramatically.
Mike gets out of the backseat of the car, far more gracefully than I did, and turns back to remove everything from the back seat. He hands the bags to Sophie and I walk away, heading towards the house. It’s immense and it’s beautiful. There’s not another home in sight, but with the thickness of the forest I’m not sure I could tell if there was one in close proximity anyways. A three storey monstrosity, bigger than any home I’ve ever been in. A covered deck wraps around the first floor of the house, wicker patio set on one side, large sectional couch on the other with a BBQ off to the side. The second floor balcony also wraps around the house, there seems to be a patio set but I can’t make out any other details. While I’m staring up at the house in awe, Joe walks up beside me, hands full of bags.
“Not too shabby, huh?” He says, stopping beside me.
“Joseph, it’s amazing. How long have you owned it for?”
“Just a few years now. A friend of the family built it and ran into financial troubles. I bought it from him for a steal. The second floor deck wasn’t there before, we added that. We also put a hot tub in the back, you’ll love it. It can fit an entire football team in it.” He continues walking up to the door and I follow him, sure that they don’t really need my help with the bags. He fumbles for his keys and I’m worried that he’s forgotten them and we’ll be breaking in or heading back, but after a minute he finds it and we all clap. Once the door swings open, we all pour in. Mike and Joe drop the bags on the hallway floor and Joe throws on the lights. I gasp, immediately impressed with the house. It’s an open concept floor plan, the kitchen is right in the middle with the living room to the right and a dining room to the left. The entire back wall is covered with floor to ceiling windows, looking out on the lake. The sun is just starting to set and the effect is magical.
“You should live here all the time.” I say, mesmerized.
“I’ve thought about it. If I live long enough to retire, this is where I’ll spend my last days. Drinking beer by the lake and waiting for the cold hand of death to take over me.”
Sophie laughs and walks into the kitchen ahead of everybody, throwing her purse on the marble counter top. “Not a bad place to wait out the grim reaper.”
“How often do you come up here?” I ask. I was about to say ‘How often do you and your family come up here’ but thankfully stopped myself before blurting that out. The fewer times his wife and kids are mentioned, the better.
“Not often enough. This is the first time I’ve been up since the fall but we have someone who comes and looks after everything during the winter. I should start renting out the place in the winter but who has the time? It’s harder to rent it in the summer because we often decide to come up on a whim.”
“I can only imagine how much money you could get renting out this place.” I imagine what it would be like to own something like this, to have the opportunity to pay the mortgage by renting it and not do it because it seems like too much work. “Honestly, if you need someone to rent this for you, I would do it in a heartbeat. Just throw me some of the profits is all I ask.”
“Yeah? You’d have to arrange cleaners and insurance and stuff like that. I have too much on my plate to be worrying about it.”
“For sure, I could do everything. You just think about it. It’s not far from ski hills, right?”
“There’s one only 5 minutes away.” Joe says.
“It’d be perfect to rent out.” I reply.
Sophie interrupts, fridge open and her face stuck inside of it. “Joseph, you have nothing. Not even condiments.”
“I know, she insists on taking everything out in the fall. I mean, mustard and ketchup is not going to go bad. I don’t get it. We pay for the hydro to be on year round, might as well have some condiments in the god damn fridge, right?” He grumbles.
“Well I’m half starved, I think it’s time we go get some food.” She says, moving on to the cupboards and letting the fridge door slam shut.
“Why don’t Mike and I go and you two ladies can stay here and make yourselves at home. The liquor cabinet is full even though the cupboards might not be. I don’t have any juice or soft drinks but if I know the two of you, that shouldn’t be a problem.” He smirks and throws open the liquor cabinet, much taller than myself and stocked full of giant liquor bottles. All high quality brands of course.
“Oh, it’s like Christmas!” I scoot over to the cabinet and lose myself in the possibilities.
“What kind of mix would you girls like?” He asks.
“Oh god, I can’t decide what I want to drink yet. How about you get us some orange juice, Diet Pepsi, margarita mix and three bottles of Sprite. That way we can just drink anything that our heart desires.” I say, hoping that’s enough to get the four of us through this weekend.
“You got it lady. Any requests for food?” Joe says, slowly heading towards the door.
“Mike knows what I like.” I turn and smile at Mike, who is staring straight at the liquor bottles with a look of profound awe on his face.
“I’d like the biggest bag of Doritos you can find, please. How’s the water here?” Sophie says, opening and closing cupboards to learn where everything is.
“It’s pristine, you’ll love it. Okay ladies, you behave yourself. Don’t drink too much, we don’t want to come back and you’re both passed out.” Joe says, winking at Sophie.
“That’s not likely to happen.” Sophie says. She walks Joe to the door and I can hear her plant a big smooch on him. “Pick up some condoms too, I can’t remember if I brought any.” She says it quietly to him but loud enough for Mike and I to hear. We look at each other and smirk. Hopefully our rooms are at different ends of the house. I know from experience that they can get quite loud.
I give Mike a quick kiss and whisper to him to grab me some Tylenol. By the looks of that liquor cabinet I’m going to have a wicked headache in the morning.
As soon as the door shuts behind them and we hear the car start up and leave, Sophie and I strip to our underwear without a word and slide the back door open. She has grabbed a bottle of Fireball and no glasses.
“Oh fuck, I’ve never opened one of these. Do you think we need to do anything special?” She asks, looking at the hot tub cover and biting one side of her lip. The hot tub is huge and I’m not sure we’ll be strong enough to lift the cover.
“I have no idea. Let’s just grab it from different ends and try to lift it and throw it off.”
“If we break it he’s going to kill us. I should have asked him to open it before we left but I wanted him to get food and not just decide to wait and jump in the hot tub with us.” She says, placing the bottle of Fireball on the ground.
“We should have brought swim suits. Oh God, Sophie, it’s freezing out here. Come on. Help me get this off.” Somehow we manage to throw the cover off and underneath it the hot tub is churning up tantalizing looking bubbles.
“Ready?” Sophie says. I nod and we both ease ourselves in. “Oh it’s so nice. Does he just keep this on all the time? Must be expensive.”
“I doubt it, I’m sure he had his caretaker come up and get everything going.” I say. The water is just hot enough and feels heavenly.
“I guess so.” Sophie looks around, then reaches behind her and grabs the Fireball from the ground. Cracking open the lid of the bottle, she puts the lid on the edge of the hot tub and takes a swig from the bottle. Her eyes screw shut for a second as the fiery alcohol heats up her throat. “It’s so beautiful here. I don’t ever want to leave.” We both look out at the lake, the sun is slowly setting and soon there will be no hint of light in the sky.
“By the end of the weekend you’ll probably be sick of Joe. And me. And Mike.” I say.
“Not likely. Joe’s pretty fun, I like him. And of course I like you guys. I’d never get tired of you.” She smiles at me and I smile back.
“Soph, I have to ask you something. Do you ever get the feeling that Joe wants to make you his wife?”
“What? No. Why would you say that?” She says, lifting one eyebrow at me.
“Well, he just seems really unhappy in his marriage.” I say.
“He’s just bored. He won’t leave her. I know that.” She shakes her head as if to dismiss the idea.
“You sure about that?”
“Yes, I’m sure. He’d never marry me anyways, even if he did. He’d have to marry an Italian.”
“What? Are you serious?” I ask, not sure if she’s just pulling my leg.
“Yes. I’m dead serious.”
“And what if he didn’t?”
“I guess his entire family would tease him about it. I think it’s mostly his mother, she’s very old school.”
“That’s so fucking prejudice.” I say, somewhat outraged.
“I know. It’s good though, it means that he will never divorce her and beg for me to marry him. Talk about awkward. I don’t want to ruin what we have.” She says in a very matter of fact voice.
“You mean you wouldn’t even consider marrying him if he was single?” I say, surprised. I guess it was silly of me to assume since they got along so well, that perhaps if things were different she’d be interested.
“No way, Sarah. You really think I would?” She says, her voice sounding almost hurt.
“I dunno… he’s so sweet. And rich.” I can’t help but look back up at the house, looming majestically over us. “You guys just get along so well. You have great chemistry.”
“That doesn’t mean I would marry him! I really like Joe. Really, really like him. He’s a fantastic guy, sweet and funny and full of life. The only reason I agreed to move into the apartment was because I knew he wasn’t a flake and that he was interested in a long term arrangement such as this. He’ll never leave his wife and even if he did, he’d never want me in her place. I have an important role in his life but being a wife is not it. I’m fun and hot and young and horny and that’s what he needs me for, to make him feel young and wanted and to make him feel like he’s a sexual being again. I would even consider still seeing him after I get out of the business but how long would that last? What happens when I’m in my thirties instead of twenties? Think he’ll really want me then? No, he’ll find a new hotter, kinkier and younger escort to make his mistress.”
“You think so? I think he really likes you.” I say.
“Oh, he does. But don’t ever confuse that with actual love. He likes me and he probably loves the way I make him feel, but that doesn’t mean he will ever be fully devoted to me. He could get bored of me tomorrow, I really have no way of knowing. I’m just going to enjoy it while it lasts.” She closes her eyes and leans back, taking a long swig of the Fireball. “Damn, this stuff is strong. Try some.” As promised the hot tub is huge and she has to swim over to me to let me try the booze. Settling down next to me, we both start kicking our legs and churning up waves.
“I’m never getting out of here.” I say.
“You’ll be one big prune in another twenty minutes.” She replies.
“That’s okay, what’s wrong with prunes? I could get used to it.”
“Will Mike be mad that you’re in your bra and panties when Joe comes back?” She asks.
“I highly doubt it. It’s covering the same amount of skin as my bikini does.”
“Might be a bit more see through though.” She says, looking down at my chest and poking my nipple. “Maybe white wasn’t such a good choice for a bra.”
“I didn’t exactly know that we were going to be in a hot tub or else I would have brought an actual swimsuit!” I say, looking down at my bra and sighing at my very obvious nipples poking through my see through bra.
“I bet we’ll get the guys all frisky, you just watch. Joe won’t be able to help himself from looking at you.” She says laughing softly.
“What? Me? You’re kidding. I doubt he’d ever look at me if you were there to be looked at instead.”
“Oh yeah, Sarah, Joe thinks you’re hot. He’s told me before.”
“No he hasn’t. You’re making stuff up.” I say, shaking my head back and forth.
“Yes, he really has told me. He thinks you’re beautiful.”
“I would not have guessed that. I didn’t think I was his type.” I say, my forehead creased which signals that I’m deep in thought.
“Guys don’t just like the blondes, you know that right?” Sophie says, chuckling and shaking her head back and forth at my ignorance.
“I do know that, I just didn’t think Joe saw me in that way.”
Grabbing the bottle from my hands she takes another swig. “A few weeks ago he told me he had this really hot sex dream about you.”
“What? He told you that?”
“Well… What happened?” I say, unable to hide my curiosity.
“I knew you’d be curious. He said he had a dream that he came to our place one day and heard the shower going in Carmen’s room. He crept in, expecting to find me in the shower and surprise me, but instead when he opened the door it was you in there showering. Instead of screaming you winked at him and invited him in.”
“You started to give him a blow job and then he woke up.”
“I wish you hadn’t told me that.” I say, sighing loudly.
“Why? I thought you’d find it funny.” She says, nudging me with her right elbow.
“No, now I’m just going to picture this sloppy shower blow job I gave him in his dream and I’ll always wonder if that’s what he’s thinking about when he’s looking at me.”
“Oh, Sarah. You can’t think that way. Every man who spends more than five minutes with you probably wants to explore your body. If you start worrying about what every guy is fantasizing about you’ll never get anything done.”
“He hasn’t mentioned a threesome though, right?” I ask.
“No.” She laughs. “He has not mentioned having actual sex with you at all. He just told me about the dream and then I asked if he was attracted to you and he said you were gorgeous.”
I look down at my bra, white and completely see through. “I better get out of here and get dressed before they return. I don’t want to be responsible for any unwanted boners.”
Hopping out of the hot tub, I make a beeline for the sliding door. Sophie’s laughter follows me until I close the door behind me.