Chapter Eighteen

The sizzling sound of bacon frying could be heard, waking me up from what felt like a deep slumber. The aroma of pig wafted into my nose, and was then joined by the scent of eggs, followed by coffee.

“Oh good you’re awake.” Sofia said as I approached her kitchen/dining area.

She lived in a studio apartment in a building that housed six of them. She was number three. The elevator leading to each unit was in the center. To the left was the living room as well as an area dedicated to a makeshift darkroom to which could only be seen if you entered the enclosed area hidden behind walls constructed around it. Behind that, moving to the opposite end, was her bedroom which was also separated by a wall but large enough to conceal a queen sized bed, two night stands, a full-length mirror, and vanity. Various paintings filled the otherwise unused portions of the walls until reaching the kitchen/dining area. To the left of that was a bathroom in spacious size.

I noticed something during a late-night bathroom visit: she lived alone and there were no signs that a child also took up occupancy. Sofia had never mentioned having children nor had the topic ever been brought up, and now that I am a bed mate does that qualify as grounds to make such an inquiry?

I walked up to her and put my hands lightly upon her shoulders and kissed the back of her neck.

“You hungry?” The tone of her voice softened to a playful whisper; she was delighted that I was there. My stomach had made a loud noise, answering her question. We laughed as I excused myself to her bathroom to wash the sleep out of my eyes. When I returned she had already began setting the table. “I wasn’t sure if you preferred juice or milk so I served both.” She stood in front of the table waiting for me to approach with her hands clasped in front of her and a look of satisfaction on her face. She seemed to enjoy playing hostess. Or rather, she enjoyed feeding the men she allowed in her bed?

I walked over, kissing her gently, and then pulled her chair out. I had never done that before, such a gentlemanly gesture. I took my seat and we immediately began eating. There was a comfortable silence for the first few minutes that was only filled with warm smiles and hand caressing. She is much older than me but there seems to be a bond present that defies time. I am attracted to this woman and now that I’ve seen her act outside of my adoration for her physical appearance, I can tell she would make a prime candidate for a wife.

The lack of adolescent paraphernalia still danced in my head. I had to entertain my curiosity. After all, how can this experiment work if I do not “put in work” as the saying goes.

“May I ask you something? I’m not sure if it’s appropriate but I’m rather curious.”

“No, you cannot move in with me.”

“Beg your pardon?”

“I know my apartment is great and all but we just slept together and I’m not ready for that kind of step.”

The playful tone in her voice suggested sarcasm mixed with teasing. “You couldn’t handle me as a roommate anyhow.” I said.

“You’re right. I couldn’t handle you last night so imagine if we lived with one another.”

Her tone suggested embarrassment and the slight redness of her cheeks proved accurate. I’m not very big. Then again, Sofia is pretty small. I once read that her vagina is the ideal sexual weapon to obtain in the war on men and women because it suggests she hasn’t been with many partners. A vagina that can easily be penetrated can mean a few things: she’s had a child, one too many bed mates, or she does not work on those muscles. Wendy has a vagina you can easily penetrate with minimal amount of lubrication. A term to which was associated with a vagina like Sofia’s, “vice grip,” almost proved the notion that premature ejaculation was eminent. Luckily I have had plenty of practice on self-control prior to the days of obtaining a sexual partner.

“I noticed there are no signs of any children living here. I always assumed you had at least one. You’re fantastic with the children at the day care. You give off a motherly glow. The role seems perfect for you.”

Her expression slackened as she averted my gaze. A long sigh, then, “I was pregnant a few years ago by a man I loved very dearly. Six months into the pregnancy I was in a car accident. The driver swerved right when he should have gone left, I was hit from the side, my car flipped over several times. When I came to I had been lying in a hospital bed in Forest Hills, Queens. I had suffered a concussion and three broken ribs, one of which had punctured my unborn son’s developing brain. Once the fetus had been removed the doctor then noticed damage to my uterus, unrelated to the accident she says. But, I can no longer have children. The money I obtained from the lawsuit against the driver had been substantial so I decided to start my own business.”

“The day care center.”

She shook her head. “I may not be able to bear children but I can at least feel like a mother five days a week,” she shrugged, “and that’s more than some women in my situation can say.”

“Have you considered adopting?”

“I have a friend who has been in social work for years. After the accident and the man I loved left me, I reached out to him. He told me how long the list to adopt a child in this country is, regardless of the child’s age. Children stay in the system in most cases because not a lot of families want to adopt someone that isn’t of infancy. So, they often get forgotten. That broke my heart. Nevertheless, I am still on the waiting list. I told them the age or race didn’t matter, I just wanted to be a mother again.”

Sofia was visibly upset, almost to the point of tears.

“I should never have brought it up. This is not breakfast table conversation material.”

“It’s quite alright. The topic would have been brought up eventually. I’d rather it be over a meal than while we’re lying in bed.”

“So, this wasn’t just a one time thing for you?”

“Heavens to Betsy no! I am very much attracted to you, Johnathan. You’re highly ambitious and very intelligent. Why wouldn’t I want you around?”

I blushed. Admiration was something I had not gotten used to and probably never will. “You understand that I hadn’t made a move solely for the fact that we were working together, right?”

She leaned in closer, dropping her voice a decibel. “Of course I do. I respect you for it. Despite my body screaming for you, I knew holding back was the best option.”

“And you’re satisfied with the outcome?”

With a smile she said, “I cooked you breakfast didn’t I?”

“My last girlfriend never did and she was pleased with my bedroom skills.” This was the first time I had mentioned anything Wendy-related to someone outside of Ralph, Melina, and Freddy.

“How old is she?”

“Around my age.”

She shook her head. “Young women don’t know a thing about men.”

And I know nothing of women despite my many illusions of such. She kissed me lightly on the lips and stood up while grabbing our plates. “No no no. Let me take care of this. Go in that darkroom of yours and prepare some of your work for me.”

Sofia stood in shock for a moment. I lightly padded her on the rear end in a playful manner and insisted she do what I said. She walked away with a smile on her face. The experiment seems to be moving along quite nicely, I thought as I headed for the sink.

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