Inside

Prologue

This is the true account of the midlife realization of Hannah Fleming; the short period in her life when she discovered her pathway to wholeness. Through a gateway of honesty she entered a world of intense passion, emotion, and eros. With this unfeigned telling of her detailed written and spoken chronicle – names and places fictional to conceal identity – Hannah can now relive that extraordinary experience as often as she wishes simply by opening this novel to evoke her wondrous journey once again—the very reason for this written account.

Her ardent wish is that in learning of her passage into eros, you too might find comfort in the person you truly are; never fearing your private thoughts, needs, erotic fantasies, or uniqueness, but instead celebrating your individuality in all its depth and truth, just as she was finally able to do.

As well, Hannah asks for understanding, not offense, in the directness and detail of this record, for only with a vivid, accurate picture of the passion and erotic sharing can she truly recreate and relive what she once owned—truth in self; a sexually and passionately unrestrained woman. This is the real story of Hannah Fleming’s doorway to eros.

A Touch

I admired my naked body in the full-length mirror as I had done more times than I could remember, but this time I saw the train of time speeding toward old age—with me on it. The vision struck me hard. The figure I saw before me was still sensuous, enticing, and erotic, but for how long? How many tomorrows were left before my full breasts sag, my shapely form turns frumpy?

I stared at my nakedness. “Good God!” I said aloud, “Hannah, you’re fifty years old today, a half-century, and I don’t even know you yet.”
Looking back at me was the woman I wanted desperately to fully realize and experience. I studied my image with even greater scrutiny. “How do I discover you, Hannah, before you are no longer lovely?”

I had been around the sun fifty times, yet the desire to experience emotional and sexual passion still burned within me; it would not, could not be quenched. More than air to breathe, I needed to be a whole woman. My husband, Andrew, could take me there, he was all I wanted, but Andrew didn’t. Two, maybe three times a month when it could no longer be reined in, I had my ways. My hand on Andrew’s manhood, bringing his hand to my large breasts, or fondling him after his shower would always embarrass him, but inform as well. Intercourse seldom lasted more than five minutes even when I did what I could to delay his orgasm, and foreplay would shorten it even more.

The statue of my flesh was there before me in the mirror, arms at my sides, looking back at me in question. Imagining it belonged to Andrew, my hand moved to my shoulder, fingers resting against my smooth skin. I watched as my fingertips slowly moved down my soft breast, stroking gently, absorbing the touch. The pad of my finger circled my nipple, and then moved deliberately around the entirety of its fullness.

Such a magnificent feeling, a simple touch—yet so intense, erogenous. No man had ever caressed my flesh this way, not even my husband. Both hands moved slowly, one under each breast. They were still firm, heavy, sensual, and as I lifted, I felt the weight of their passion as the touch and beauty again filled my mind with yearning. So beautiful, delicate, feminine, desirous, and erotic.

I lightly squeezed to take in the feeling upon my flesh—a wondrous and exciting sensation. I gently kneaded them, working them slowly, wishing I could place my mouth upon them, wishing Andrew’s mouth was upon them, his hands and fingers as gentle as mine. Why couldn’t Andrew just once enter this world of genuine passion and take them gently in his hands, caress the nipples with his lips for his pleasure and mine? Why didn’t he hunger for them in the way of passion and love?

I closed my eyes and imagined him gently caressing, kissing them, studying them, loving them, slowly, purposely for his pleasure. But he had no idea how. They were just sexual objects to enjoy during intercourse, never to kiss or caress gently in romance or love. They were to fondle and grab for sexual foreplay in preparation for his climax, nothing more. Yet they were so much more than he could begin to imagine.

I looked at one hand holding my flesh as the other slipped between my legs to cup my mound. In my palm was my femininity, a complex, intricate beauty and pleasure available but unwanted by my spouse. My fingers slowly rubbed the full length of the labia, and stopped to allow my palm and fingers to take in the entirety of my sex. Oh, such a wondrous and sensuous place. My other hand joined in and as I rubbed my inner thighs, my hands pushed against my wetness. As they slowly moved down, then up, the slippery gift allowed my forefingers ease of access and they slid eagerly between the folds.

Using both forefingers I spread myself, watching in the mirror, wanting, wishing I could bring my mouth there, where I wanted Andrew to take his, to feel his tongue take the very essence of erotic pleasure and passionate love. I wanted a man to have as much pleasure in giving and taking as I took in receiving the act—equal partners. I wanted to drown together in erotic, passionate, romantic, love. I wanted Andrew, or any man for that matter, to want this as much for himself as for me. To leave everything behind and enter a universe of total passion, love, lust, and eros, merging our totality of body, sex, and emotion into a single joined erotic passion, consuming each other’s taste, fragrance, beauty, and touch.

Ever so gently my forefinger pressed against my clitoris as it gained entrance into me. My other hand added to the desire, and as my fingers gently rubbed the most intimate parts of me, I envisioned them as a lovers tongue. I could feel his intense desire for the feel, taste, and fragrance of my sex as he licked, inhaled, and sucked into him the reality of my intimacy, wanting to consume all of me. I closed my eyes, imagined my lover moving his nose and mouth slowly upon my labia, his hands upon my thighs, his thumbs gently spreading my folds to reach the wetness and warmth of my passion, sliding his nose gently up inside my wet, warm crevice to allow his tongue access to the sweet taste of woman. I visualized his licking over and over again to consume my flavor as his nose came to rest upon my clitoris, massaging it, licking and inhaling me, stroking me; pulling in every flavor, feel, and scent that belonged to me as I gave myself to him.

Suddenly, a wondrous, intense pulse enveloped me; over and over it ripped through me, weakening my knees. Barely able to remain standing, I pushed hard against my sex to take in every morsel of the gift as my orgasm peaked. My entire body pulsated pure pleasure, first from the orgasm, then from my heart pounding within my naked chest. My fingers moved upon and within me as my climax slowly waned. They dipped deep into the heat of my sex in lieu of my lover’s tongue. I brought them to my face, applying the wondrous slippery scent on and around my nose and lips, pushing hard to bring the taste and fragrance of pleasure to me, wishing they could be Andrew’s, or any man’s fingers against my face.

Immersed in pleasure, reality again triggered frustration as my mind screamed, damn, Hannah, you are fifty years old today—and you’ve never felt whole.

Black Balloons

I pulled in front of my shop and gazed up at the sign, “Hannah’s Harvest — Gifts and Crafts,” realizing how important the little store was to me. It seemed my purpose now that the kids were grown. It was about an hour before opening and I had much to do, so I headed to my office. Navigating the aisles, I thought it odd none of the staff were milling around. I opened my office door to what seemed like a thousand black balloons, each reminding me of ever increasing age—that damn train. I rolled my eyes and frowned as I flicked them off my desk and chair, then began kicking them into the hallway.

I heard Happy Birthday being sung loudly, and in a few moments three women and two singing men walked into my office scattering the black balloons. A dark chocolate frosted cake was placed on my desk, plates passed out, and coffee poured as I stood shaking my head and wagging my finger.

Their intent was to please, and I cared for each of them, though the number fifty boldly written on the cake did anything but please. Looking at the balloons I thought, fifty and horny. I glanced at Jason – masculine, early forties, divorced – and I wondered if he was horny. I wanted to ask. I glanced quickly at his crotch noting the lovely bulge, and pictured him naked, endowed, and delectable, the birthday present I really wanted.

I smiled and shook my head. “Those black balloons just caused me to forget about any raises,” unless of course I could get a raise from Jason. “I guess getting senile does that. You had better take every last one of them with you when you leave or my memory may never return.”

I opened my gifts thanking each person with a hug, wanting to grope Jason’s crotch instead of wrapping my arms around him. Returning to work, each of them carried an arm-full of black balloons. As Jason left, I couldn’t help but notice his beautiful butt, wishing it was unclothed. I wanted him to close the door, turn around, and drop his pants to reveal an engorged penis pointed at me, with a bright red bow at the base. I imagined sitting on the couch, Jason standing in front of me presenting his gift. I envisioned the feel and taste in my mouth. How I wanted him just that way and wished I could ask him to remain. I pictured a smile on his face as the bulbous head felt the warmth of my mouth close around it. I would use my tongue to massage that special place, and while I gently fondled his scrotum, his thickness would suddenly throb, then spasm intensely to pour onto my tongue his warm, powerful orgasm. Oh, to know the flavor of a man. Even though I had never tasted a man’s orgasm, I wanted it, and I knew I would love it in every way.

Shaking away the thought, I sat at my desk, heard balloons popping down the hall, and thought how lucky I was to have those individuals as employees. I glanced at the photo on my desk of Andrew standing beside me at the lake and thought about his handsome face and masculine body. His penis would be perfect, but why would he not give it to me that way, even without a ribbon?

Spotting the last black age reminder hiding in my hummingbird trash can, my mind changed channels. I grabbed the letter opener, twisted, slid forward in my chair, and jammed it into the superfluous admonisher of time’s passing. It popped with a vengeance startling me. Ears ringing, I spun in my chair, slid to the computer, and opened a new document. I wrote a short paragraph, reread it, made a change or two, and saved it to my flash drive, which I then put in my purse, wondering if I could do this.

Turning fifty had caused much question, consternation, and awareness of what I didn’t have, yet ached to own. Talk about a rude awakening. Fifty! Damn! I still didn’t know what it felt like to be uninhibited; to literally let my pants down sexually and bathe in erotic passion. Was that such a sin, or too much to ask? What I had perceived as a gap in my longing suddenly became a Grand Canyon of erotic desire. Perhaps women too have mid-life crises, but instead of something—a sports car—we need someone, hopefully our husband, to help us become emotionally and sexually fulfilled; but why now, why mid-life? Had I spent all my energy on being a wife, chores, and raising children, totally ignoring who I was, or rather wanted to be? Perhaps I just didn’t dare ask myself, fearful of the answer. Was it because I allowed my husband to define my sexuality through his? Could it be I didn’t think I deserved sexual pleasure? Or was it a combination? I thought for a moment, Yup, all of them.

Fifty years? That was far too much time to realize I wanted to know myself. I knew my body was there and I dabbled in the pleasure of it, but never really addressed my needs in any serious or direct way. I simply left it up to others, and unfortunately never had a wise mentor. Why did I avoid looking deeply into my sexuality? Do most women wait half their lives to finally attend to the pleasure and fulfillment body and mind together can render? And the real question; what do we do when our spouse won’t help us and a sports car won’t substitute?

Lauren became my best friend almost immediately after I moved to the neighborhood. She quickly became my confidant and counselor; I trusted her completely. There was little we couldn’t discuss, and even our interests were similar: antiques, gardening, reading, and cooking. Lauren’s husband, Brian, was a wonderful spouse, lover, and friend to Lauren. They were both blonde and handsome. Lauren wore her hair short, which framed her narrow face, soft rosy complexion, blue eyes, and happy smile. I liked Brian. He was slim, only a little taller than Lauren, but masculine and sexy. When I’d look into his eyes, they oozed passion, and I knew he was what Lauren wanted and certainly great in bed—or at least had been.

Brian had become sexually dysfunctional following a stroke a year earlier. They had always been extremely sexual, and he knew how important intimacy was to Lauren. They had looked to medical science and tried everything, but it seemed nothing could be done to alleviate his impotence. Lauren said she would often have as many as three orgasms when they made love, and she saw how difficult it was for Brian to accept that he could no longer put himself inside her to bring them about. He would do his best to satisfy Lauren, but he knew the toys and male strap-on were nothing like the real thing, and though oral sex would take her there, she missed his hardness inside her for a long, passionate, erotic, romantic sharing.

I told Lauren I felt guilty talking about my lack of sex, for Brian had a problem he could do nothing about. “Don’t be silly, Hannah,” she said, “it’s actually worse for you because Andrew is capable.”

I felt so badly for Brian. “It isn’t fair; he is such a good husband.”
She looked sad. “I just wish he’d let me have him orally as much as I would like. Sure, I miss how big he would get, but I so enjoy sucking him flaccid. He feels so emasculated. It embarrasses him to remain limp while I play and enjoy. I tell him how much I love it, how erotic it is for me, but he thinks I’m feeling sorry for him. I am, but I love his masculinity limp or hard—but it just depresses him.”
“Oh, Lauren, I’m so sorry.”
“He does let me felate him, but it always reminds him of the man he’s not.”
Lauren mentioned that Brian suggested she find a safe and exclusive lover. She was thankful for the offer, and at first didn’t consider it. After Brian mentioned it several times and convinced her he was completely honest, it had taken little time for her to find Art.

Lauren and Art would get together two or three times a month. She often described to me in graphical detail what they shared, which would drive me crazy. It also made me realize how utterly naive and limited my sex life truly was and had been. I wanted to experience with Andrew what she described. I envied her and respected Brian for his understanding and lack of jealousy. Andrew knew nothing of Brian’s problem or Lauren’s lover—he’d never understand, only condemn. The four of us would often do dinner out, or at our homes, but the conversations were always restrained; whereas when we were together without Andrew our conversations were fun, open, and even included sex. Both Lauren and Brian told me I should find a lover. Brian even said if he were still capable, he’d be more than pleased to teach me the finer aspects of what a penis on the right person could do, and would give me what I needed, and Lauren wished he could. It upset me that my husband had all his sexual faculties yet didn’t want to use them, while Brian wanted more than anything to use his but they just weren’t there for him. It was simply unfair.

Knowing Andrew was away for the weekend on reserve duty, Lauren came by for lunch. I looked at her across the table as she sipped her coffee, thinking how lovely her blonde hair framed her face.

“What if I changed my hair color to blonde like yours? You’re so beautiful.”
She frowned. “Girl, what are you talking about?”
“You’re so pretty. Maybe if I become a blonde Andrew will want me.”
Lauren sighed pretentiously. “Hannah, stop it! You’re an elegant looking woman, more than pretty. Your brown hair sets off your flawless complexion; you aren’t a blond, period. And you know what? Nobody has more penetrating eyes. Add your sexy mouth and smile, your big, gorgeous tits, and damn gal, every man would want you. Anyway, it’s not your hair color or appearance, it’s Andrew.” She shook her head. “Boy do you need a lover.”

She had been with Art the previous afternoon and as usual shared every detail, driving my fantasies wild. She’d suggested time and again I join the swinger site she found Art through, but I had never considered it. After lunch I surprised myself and asked her to show me the site. We went to my computer and she explained how she had placed her ad. As she walked me through the process, I could only think about Andrew finding out—I dismissed the thought.

Andrew returned home early Sunday evening and we decided to try a new Italian restaurant. After eating, we drove to a club, danced once, and enjoyed the live music. I squeezed him tightly as we slowly moved to the melody, my cheek against his neck, my hand gently stroking the back of his head, and my breasts pushed hard against his chest. I felt so close to him, and the affection on the dance floor heightened my need for intimacy. When we arrived home I headed for the shower, but by the time I had finished, Andrew was already in bed. He would never consider making love without a shower so I knew what it meant. Lying beside him I wondered if he had lost his attraction for me, or if he was losing his desire for sex altogether. While I was growing more interested in intimacy, what little interest he had was waning.

I couldn’t sleep; my mind churned with all manner of doubt, worry, and feeling cheated by life. I got up quietly without waking Andrew and went to the living room to read, but all I could do was wonder why he wouldn’t let me in. I was his wife, he loved me, did so much for me, gave me the material things I needed, but he couldn’t give me what I desired most. I longed to feel his emotions and masculinity, and I wanted the freedom to be passionately and physically complete. I simply couldn’t understand why he felt the way he did and wondered if it was me.

My hand slipped between my legs and I imagined my finger as Andrews tongue. As one finger glided between my folds, feeling the warmth and moisture, my thumb gently stroked my clitoris. Eyes closed, I visualized Andrew’s face taking my sex, his tongue tasting me, his finger inside my depth; a strong orgasm coursed through me. I brought my fingers to my lips, wiped my mouth with my wetness, tasting and inhaling the sweet flavor and fragrance, wondering why Andrew thought it offensive.

Oral sex was beyond his consideration. I had mentioned many times that freshly washed body parts were luscious and most pleasurable, but Andrew could not accept such a thing. He never said it in so many words but it was easy to see he thought “down there” was dirty. Conversation about sex had been restrained long ago and I had finally admitted to myself Andrew would never change. I had two choices, accept this gap in my life or find wholeness elsewhere. I returned to bed, realizing if I were to ever know fulfillment, if I were to ever feel whole, it would not be with Andrew. I fell asleep too tired for depression.

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©2018 Kimberly Hartley

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