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Love Long Forgotten

A short story by Jonathan Mitchell

Love is such a strange and paradoxical emotion. It is so intense yet at the same time so potentially ephemeral. People swear their undying love towards their significant others only to end the relationship and not feel that same feeling again, at least not towards that same person. Then maybe, they will feel the same way, yet towards another. Even marriage, that sacrosanct institution, is no more than a 50/50 proposition at best. People promise 'til death do us part', yet get divorced ten years later or less in about 50% of the cases. One of the most bizarre if not one of the most interesting instances of this phenomena is the saga of Love Long Forgotten which is as follows:

Acme Steel employee and salesman Gary Haverford was indeed elated and in the process of downing his favorite drink a tequila sunrise at his favorite watering hole The Half Blue Moon Saloon. He had not only bought a round of drinks for his fellow steel salesman but for the entire patronage of the Half Blue Moon Saloon at that time.

"That's $84.49," said the seemingly gruff bartend to Gary. "You sure you can afford this, mac?" The man seemed somewhat concerned about the obviously drunken man losing his inhibitions and then his cash and opening the establishment up to some costly if not frivolous litigation.

"No problem, friend," said Gary handing the man a $100 dollar bill and ignoring the anachronistic name that the bartend had called him.

The reason that Gary was so happy was that he had just become the newest member of Acme's one million dollar club, meaning that he had sold one million dollars worth of steel in the company's fiscal year which had just ended. At a $25,000 base salary and a 15% commission this meant that Gary had earned an annual salary of $175,000.

Jeffrey Jessup sat next to Gary at the adjacent barstool, nursing a screwdriver, his favorite drink. He stared into the smiling face of Gary, but somehow the smile seemed contrived for some reason, not a genuine smile. He could tell something was wrong with his colleague. He decided to try to find out what was going on.

"Hey, Gary, you okay, something wrong?"

"Just one thing," replied Gary.

"What's that, asked Jeff.

"Well, I have been so busy this whole year, hustling trying to make a good commission on the steel that I haven't been laid in a whole year, I feel that my prostate is going to burst."

"Watch your language," said Jeff.

The two salesmen laughed, drunken laughter.

Then there was a brief silence which Jeff had decided to break. "I just wish Jessica Fonseca were here, she'd take you for a ride."

"Who the fuck is that?"

"She's this chick I went to college with, we used to call her funseeker. She was this sort of lush. We used to have booze runs cause we were too young to legally buy at the time and smuggle some really good shit into the dorms. Then Jessica would come by, and you knew you could get her drunk and then she would just be this great lay. It was really great, she was a great chick. She wrote these great papers for sociology and anthropology courses. First one on Margaret Mead's Growing Up In New Guinea and then another one about Ashley Montageau. She let me plagiarize some of her papers in exchange for some booze, boy she was great. I only got to lay her about four times though, it was some more for some of the other people though."

"Wow, sounds great, Jeff," Gary was truly intrigued but it had been many years since he and Jeff had been in college and he knew that the social life they could expect now just did not jive with the college days. Of course, one could always dream of their salad days.

"Hey, what'd ya say we have some shots of Wild Turkey, 105 proof, that we be cool before we call it a night," said Gary.

"You buying?" chimed in Jeff and some of Gary's other fellow steel salesmen.

"Of course," Gary replied back. Then Jeff and the other salesmen nodded in agreement and the gruff bartend ended up passing around some shot glasses filled with the potent potable for each of the salesmen that was helping Gary celebrate his entrance into Acme's one million dollar club.

A few days later, Gary had decided to slow down a bit. He had had a hectic pace in order to make the 175 grand from his sales job and now might be the time to try to meet some chicks. There was the old saw about the supermarket being the best pickup place in town and Gary decided to act upon that. Besides, he needed to do some shopping.

He entered the supermarket casually dressed, doing his shopping slowly so he could multitask, meaning that he could both at once do his shopping and look for a good opportunity for scoring for the first time in a year. He saw some women who were the right fit, age-wise and fox-wise but there did not seem to be any opportunities for appropriate opening lines or any other way that he could make his introduction and show any one of them what a great catch Gary Haverford was, rich, handsome and modest. He laughed to himself as he was thinking about the last attribute.

Finally, he finished his shopping and started to slowly walk back to his car with a shopping cart full of groceries. He then noted a strange sight. He saw a woman standing in the middle of the supermarket's parking lot, looking kind of forlorn and confused. She seemed to be looking at some sort of paper. Gary could not tell if it were a shopping list or something else. She was an attractive woman with dark hair, dark complexion and soft brown eyes and high cheekbones like an American Indian. Gary decided that this might be his golden opportunity. Hastily, he loaded the remaining groceries into the trunk of his car and returned the shopping cart to an appropriate place. He walked quickly over to where the woman was standing and he smiled, catching her eye.

"Are you lost?" asked Gary. It was not the best opening line but it was all he could think of on the spur of the moment.

"Well, maybe," replied the woman. "I'm not sure."

Gary had trouble telling whether this was propitious or not.

"Can I be of assistance?" he queried and then congratulated himself on an improved follow-up line.

"Well," replied the woman, "it is just that I moved into a new apartment last week and I still don't really have the address memorized or remember where it is but I have it written down on a piece of paper somewhere. She put the small bag of groceries that she had been carrying down on the pavement and then rummaged through her purse, apparently looking for the piece of paper with her new address on it. "Ahhh, here it is," she said finally. "Maybe you know where that is?" she inquired hopefully.

Gary looked at the piece of paper containing the woman's name and address. Gary knew the area well and the street the lady lived on was about a mile from the market. He would be able to offer her a ride home and take her there and perhaps, at the same time, get to know her better. At first the woman's name did not register with Gary but then as he was about to again try to hone on his pickup skills, Gary did an immediate doubletake. The woman's name at the top of the list was Jessica Fonseca! It may have been a coincidence but Gary doubted it. At least this would give him a good chance to utilize an even better line than the one he had originally planned.

"So, done any anthro papers for Jeff Jessup recently?"

Jessica at first had a shocked expression on her face and then started smiling and then giggling. Gary knew immediately that this was indeed the Jessica Fonseca.

"No, I haven't," replied Jessica, still smiling though no longer giggling. "I guess you must be a friend of Jeff's and he talked to you about me. I hope he did not say anything bad about me."

"No, just good things," said Gary.

"How do you know Jeff? I don't remember seeing you around the dorm or the campus, so I don't think you went to college with Jeff and me."

"No, I didn't. We work together. We are both salesman for Acme Steel."

Jessica nodded, smiling. "Well you know my name, I still don't know yours."

"Gary Haverford." By reflex, Gary then held out his hand for Jessica to shake. She took his hand in hers. The handshake was not quick and tentative the way most introductory handshakes were, but rather Jessica kept her hand in Gary's for a prolonged period of time, nearly two minutes. Gary knew that this was propitious.

"I still don't know if you know where I live or not," said Jessica.

"I sure do," replied Gary in his smoothest repartee possible. "How would you like a ride home?"

"I thought you would never ask", replied Jessica sweetly. "Where's your car?"

Gary motioned Jessica to follow him to his car. Jessica followed taking her sole grocery bag with her. Gary offered to take Jessica's grocery bag but she declined with a shake of the head. Gary then opened the passenger door of the car for her and she got in, holding her grocery bag on her lap.

Gary drove Jessica to her apartment in silence. As they got the front door which was the entrance to Jessica's building, Gary knew he would have to act fast and with finesse if he wanted to get Jessica's number. It seemed likely that she was interested so he believed that the straight and direct approach would work.

"Would you like to come in for a bit?" asked Jessica before Gary could get a word in.

"Sure," replied Gary.

Gary entered the building and then Jessica's apartment as Jessica put down her bag of groceries. Gary was intrigued by the fact that Jessica said that she had must moved there and was in the process of moving and did not know her own address, yet there were no boxes in the hallways, the way there usually were when someone had first moved into an apartment and the apartment seemed pretty immaculate and well organized as if it had been lived in for a long time.

Jessica offered Gary some tea which she said she would make as soon as she put the few groceries away that she had bought from the market. After doing this, she warmed up the tea kettle that was on the stove.

"So, you drink tea," said Gary.

"Yea, I guess Jeff told you how I used to drink booze in my younger days but not anymore. I am now a teetotaler. I just drink tea instead. There was a concern that I was an alcoholic, but I think I proved I wasn't, I stopped drinking five years ago."

"Well, glad to hear it," replied Gary. I like to take a drink now and then, but I don't consider myself an alcoholic. I really don't like tea though."

"Well, is there anything else that I could offer you?"

"What have you got?"

"Well, I just have water or some diet Pepsi in the fridge."

"Ok, I'll have a diet Pepsi," replied Gary.

"Ok," replied Jessica and walked over to the refrigerator and got a diet Pepsi for Gary.

Gary then opened up the diet Pepsi and took a sip. Then he stopped, deciding he would wait until Jessica's tea was ready.

Finally, the tea kettle started whistling and Jessica got up and poured herself a cup of tea.

Jessica then started sipping her tea and so Gary felt that was his cue to drink more of the Pepsi.

"So, are you and Jeff pretty good friends?" asked Jessica.

"Yea, he worked at Acme Steel before I did, but I met him when I started working there about four years ago, and we became good friends pretty quickly and we've been pretty good friends ever since."

"I can believe that," said Jessica and then she started touching Gary's hand. "He was a really great guy, though I haven't seen him since we graduated college about 17 years ago." Then Gary touched Jessica's hand back and before the couple knew it they were both holding hands at the table while drinking their beverages.

"I remember when he and these engineering major guys and some first year medical students, got together, stole some of those elastic things they use in the hospitals and devised these sort of makeshift slings or slingshots." Jessica started giggling a little bit. "It was in April of '79. The engineering guys calculated the trajectories and they started shooting some water balloons into the campus' baseball stadium, the day there was a big game between our team and another college." Now Jessica started laughing.

"Boy, what a memory!" said Gary genuinely impressed.

"Yea and I remember drinking games Jeff would have us play, like where we had to make a speech, take a shot of Wild Turkey..."

"105 proof?" Gary interrupted.

"Yea, right," said Jessica. Jessica then continued. "Yea, like I was saying, we would have to take a shot of Wild Turkey and then tell three sentences of a story and then the next person would have to make up the next three sentences and so forth after drinking the shot of the Wild Turkey. The stories would just get crazier and the people drunker and their speech more slurred," Jessica laughed at the nostalgic memories of her college and nonteetotalar days.

"Yea, Jeff is a good guy," replied Gary. "Still drinks but I think he has outgrown those games."

"The most interesting of all that Jeff had and the one that got a lot of chicks in the dorm interested was 'pin the penis on the man'."

"Huh?" replied Gary dumbfoundedly.

"It was a great game, a variation on 'pin the tail on the donkey', except what we would do is pin a Playgirl centerfold on the wall, make a marks-a-lot marking of where the man's penis would be take this paper penis and try to pin it on the man blindfolded, after having taken the a shot of Wild Turkey of course."

"Of course," said Gary, thinking of what ingenuity his friend Jeff had with the women and how he was always getting laid. Gary might not be able to get laid as much as Jeff, but he could have been laid at least a few times in the last year, had he not been so busy achieving his goal of getting into Acme's one million dollar club. Of course, Jessica seemed promising but he would have to take it slow and sure, after all he and Jessica were long past college age.

"Would you like to take a tour of my apartment?" asked Jessica. Gary nodded, not knowing quite where this would lead. The tour of the one bedroom apartment did not take very long until all that was left was the bedroom and then Jessica inquired, "would you like to see the bedroom?" They went inside the bedroom. It was a small bedroom with bed, a chair and a t.v. set at the front of the bed.

"This bed is nice and comfortable," said Jessica. "Want to lie on it by me and test it out." Gary and Jessica lay together next to each other on the bed and it started bouncing a little bit and Gary could tell what it was.

"Oh, a water bed," said Gary who had not been on one for several years.

"Yes," said Jessica smiling an amorous smile, "simply the best in relaxation, not to mention acrobatic fucking when the opportunity arises."

Gary was blown by this last remark. "It could burst that way," he said.

"Naw, it is pretty strong, actually."

They were still lying next to each other on Jessica's water bed when Jessica started massaging Gary's thigh.

"You know what, I haven't been laid in five years," said Jessica still smiling her sensuous smile.

"You're kidding," said Gary, eying the attractive brunette suspiciously. Things were getting kind of strange now and Gary did not know what to make of it.

"Well, it's been a year for me," said Gary. "I have been very busy trying to sell as much steel as possible. Wonder what your excuse could be, a total fox like yourself."

Jessica continued to keep her hand on Gary's thigh, massaging it a little bit every now and then, but she then looked at Gary with somewhat downcast eyes. "Oh, I don't know," she said, "just one of those things I guess. But whatever it is it is in the past, we simply have to make up for lost time."

Then she leaned her face right into Gary's face very quickly getting some of her long black hair into his face and started to kiss him on the lips passionately. Gary started kissing her back and then they went at each other with passion. As they kissed, they began caressing each other and slowly started to mutually remove each other's articles of clothing. Gary started massaging Jessica's luscious breasts. Jessica then grabbed Gary's penis in her right fist, stimulating it slowly in order to get it as erect as possible without stimulating Gary to ejaculate. It seemed to Gary very well done foreplay and not the style of someone who had not been sexually active for years. It was obvious that she was interested in fucking right on the spot, otherwise she would have given him a hand job with the intent of making him come right then and there, which she obviously was not doing.

Jessica looked at Gary's penis, apparently trying to gauge the size in inches of the erect member. "There is one last thing," she said.

Gary looked at her inquisitively.

"I never raw-dog on the first date," she said, smiling. She then opened the drawer of her bedside table and pulled out a condom which she helped Gary put on.

"Hopefully you don't have problems with premature ejaculation, because I like lots of creative foreplay," said Jessica, still smiling her sensuous smile.

She then put her lips to the head of his penis and started to blow onto the penis and then started touching it with her fingers in a strange way that Gary did not understand. No woman had ever done this before.

"I guess Jeff never told you I used to play the saxophone when I was in college. I like to pretend that I am playing the saxophone with guys' cocks, makes it sort of like a sexaphone."

Gary then let out a chuckle.

Then Jessica started licking his penis. "How do you like cunnilingus? I can be a rather cunning linguist." It took a lot of self-control, especially after having gone a whole year without sex, but Gary managed to keep himself from coming.

Then, without a word, Jessica pulled Gary's penis into her vagina and some passionate lovemaking started. They first tried doing a 69. Then they did some of the acrobatic fucking that could be so much fun on a water bed. It was the most interesting and creative lovemaking that Gary had ever experienced with a woman.

Then at the end they washed themselves off and got dressed. Gary asked Jessica for her phone number.

"Well, to tell you the truth, since I just moved in here, they just put in the phone and I have not had time to memorize the number. So bad at memorizing things right off the bat," said Jessica. "I think I have it written down in my purse somewhere though." Jessica once again started rummaging in her purse and finally produced a phone number written down which she handed to Gary and Gary immediately wrote it down.

"I hope to hear from you really soon," said Jessica. "You gave a great performance today."

"So did you," said Gary.

"I will never forget this lovemaking, and I would like a repeat performance very soon," replied Jessica.

"And you shall have it soon my dear lady."

Gary then got back to his routine of immersing himself in his work, trying to make a real terrific living as a steel salesman. Maybe he would not make another attempt at joining the million dollar club, but he would want to try to make a good living just the same. Of course, it was obvious that he would not be having as much problem getting laid as he had the past year as he had Jessica on the side and theirs would be a great relationship that would develop and maybe they would get married and have kids. He would ask Jeff to be the best man at his wedding. Wouldn't Jeff get an ironic kick out of that? thought Gary to himself.

A few days had passed and Gary decided that it was time to give Jessica a call and offer her some repeat business. He punched out Jessica's number.

"Hello?" came Jessica's voice on the line, absolutely unmistakable.

"Hi, Jessica, this is Gary, long time no talk."

"Gary who?" queried Jessica.

She had said this in a serious enough tone of voice, but Gary knew she was joking.

"You know, Gary Haverford, your chauffeur, who rescues the damsel in distress who gets lost at the supermarket and brings her home across the drawbridge to her castle."

"Boy have you got the wrong number, buddy," said Jessica and hung up very abruptly.

Something very strange was going on, but Gary did not know what. He decided to go over to Jessica's in person.

He drove over to Jessica's and then walked up the stairs to her apartment and knocked on her door. Jessica came out and answered and looked at Gary as if she had never seen him before.

"Yes, what can I do for you?" asked Jessica curtly.

"Hey, stop kidding, it's me, Gary. We made passionate love the other night and now you are giving me the cold shoulder." Gary started trying to hug Jessica and kiss her and Jessica immediately recoiled and slapped Gary across the face.

"I HAVE NEVER SEEN YOU BEFORE IN MY LIFE," NOW GET THE FUCK OUT OF HERE BEFORE I CALL THE COPS," Jessica yelled, slamming the door of her apartment in Gary's face.

Gary left the apartment, demoralized. He could not understand what had happened. He decided to go to the Half Blue Moon saloon to ponder this a bit over a tequila sunrise. He had been burned by a variety of women and had women reject him with all sorts of excuses in his life, but he had never had something like this happen. Would a woman just want to have a one night stand and act like she was madly in love with a man and then deny ever having seen him? It was pretty bizarre and he could not figure it out. He then decided that maybe women were just too strange to figure out and that he would just have to be celibate for a while and throw himself even deeper into his work, perhaps making an attempt to gain entry into Acme's one million dollar club two years in a row.

For several months, he threw himself into his work, making a variety of steel sales. He just could not stop thinking about Jessica and how bizarre that whole experience had been but how much fun that afternoon of lovemaking had been. He was starting to get a bit burned out though after several months. It was winter time and he decided to take some time off to go skiing. He ended up in an orthopedist's office after having sustained a left patellofemoral fracture while on the slopes. He had been in a cast for a bit and now he was back at the doctor's office to get his cast removed. It was a multispecialty medical group with offices being shared by orthopedists, internists and neurologists. While in the waiting room, he saw Jessica. He decided to make one attempt to talk to her to ask her what had happened to make him feign forgetting about her.

"Jessica," Gary started to say.

A somewhat elderly, matronly looking woman who had been sitting next to Jessica interrupted Gary.

"What do you want with this woman?" she inquired.

"Well, I don't know who you are, but you may not believe this but she was my girlfriend for one afternoon and we had sex and then a few days later she claimed that she had forgotten about me and I am just trying to find out why, because that has to be one of the strangest things that has ever happened to me."

"I do believe you," replied the woman curtly. "I'm Jessica's aunt as well as her conservator."

"Her conservator?" queried Gary.

"That's right, Jessica sees a neurologist for follow-up and receives occupational therapy at this clinic. She has Wernicke- Korsakoff syndrome which was alcohol-induced. She became an alcoholic in college and drank so much that she put a bunch of holes in her hippocampus. That's the portion of the brain involved in forming short term memories. Jessica has no ability to form memories due to this brain disease. She only lives for the moment. However, I just can't spend all my time with her taking care of her. Whenever I take a break from her for even a bit she goes out, gets lost and a man finds her. She always ends up seducing him, mistakenly believing that she has not had sex in years, since she has no ability to form short term memories. She only lives for the moment. Since she mistakenly believes that she has not had sex in five years this makes her extremely horny, to use the vernacular of you youngsters and makes her a fantastic lover with each new man that she seduces."

A few days later, Gary was sitting with Jeff in the Half Blue Moon saloon with a tequila sunrise in front of him. He had just finished telling the whole bizarre story to Jeff who had been listening with interest.

"Now, that is one of the most interesting stories I have ever heard, not counting the incredible coincidence of you going out and meeting Jessica, just a few days after I told you about her. By the way, you haven't touched a drop of your tequila sunrise."

"No, I guess I haven't," replied Gary. He then looked at his untouched drink with disgust and stormed out of the Half Blue Moon Saloon.

The End

Copyright 2002, Jonathan Mitchell - All Rights Reserved.