(Please be aware this story contains adult sexual content.)
We got lucky on the next day as it being Sunday, both Ty and Darla decided to go around to friends for the afternoon. With Freddie watching cartoons and playing with his toys, Dan and I read through gran’s journals. Dan choose to start the year before I was born and I re-read my birth year one.
Close reading as much as I could, the detail gran had gone into about things amazed me. Not only did she written about what she had done during the day and what my mum and then I had done, she also wrote about what the neighbors and her friends had been up to. Also, about UK and world events. On 27th February, gran wrote about a rail workers and civil servant strike, 3rd March: IRA bombing London, 17th March: the opening of the new London bridge, 21 March: the flooding of a coal mine in West Yorkshire.
‘Didn’t you say that your gran had suspected one of your mum’s teachers of being your father?’ Dan broke in with sometime later.
I turned and looked up at him on the sofa. He was laying down, the journal open in both hands, his eyes on me over the top of the book. I was sat crossed legged on the floor, back to the sofa, just little way down from him. The journal before me resting against the edge of the coffee table, which was littered with drinks, snacks, the other journals and a couple of Freddie’s toys.
‘I believe so…’ I trailed, trying hard to think.
‘She writes here,’ Dan said then began reading from the diary, ‘Mary seems infatuated with her new history teacher, Mr Bradwell. When I asked her about him, she said he was twenty-four, just graduated university and taking over from Mrs Green who’s taking early retirement due to illness. Mary has never shown so much interested in history before! I hope to meet this Mr. Bradwell at parents evening in a few months time. Perhaps then though Mary will have lost interested in him.’
‘Mr Bradwell?’ I questioned, ‘I’ve seen that name a few times. I thought it was just a neighbor or a friend though. And I don’t remember gran stating his name when she listed my potential fathers.’
‘Did she write anyone’s name?’ Dan asked.
I thought for a moment, ‘I don’t remember. But it’s in here somewhere.’
‘Would you though?’ Dan mused, ‘if you were writing a list of men which accused them of getting your sixteen year old daughter pregnant would you put their names down? Okay, so the chances of someone reading your personal diary are slim, but it still could happen….Then she’d have been in trouble and the rumors would have further spread.’
I felt a shiver go through me as he said the first part of that. I saw Darla in my mind’s eye. How would I feel if my fifteen year old daughter got pregnant? Especially, if I suspected a new teacher at her school? I’d be a terrible mother. And yes, the times were different now, but still teenage sex and pregnancy happened. I felt an odd sense of history repeating and I sat for a few moments reflecting on this. Dan calling my name repeatedly snapped me out of it.
‘Maya? What’s wrong?’
‘I was thinking about how history repeats itself,’ I replied slowly.
I glanced at Freddie, he was still engrossed by the bright cartoon characters. I moved around, so I lent my side against the sofa and could hold hands with my husband.
‘I really hope Darla doesn’t make the same mistake my mum did. I’d hate for her to get pregnant so young.’
Dan breathed deeply and slipped the journal to the floor. He took my hands, lent over and kissed my forehead. Dropping his lips further down, I raised my head so our lips could brush.
‘It won’t happen,’ he breathed, ‘we’ve raised her better. She’s a sensible girl. Mature for her age and she’s seen how hard bringing up a baby is.’
He glanced at Freddie whilst I nodded.
‘Why don’t you talk to her about this, later? It’ll help set your mind at rest,’ he added.
He kissed me again. Pressing harder this time. I let everything slip away and I got lost in the feel and taste of him. When the tip of his tongue teased my lips apart, I open my mouth and let him in. Dan pulled me into a tighter hug, one of his hands held my head and the other slipped down my back as I moved into a kneeling position to reach him better. I wrapped my arms around his neck, angling him down to me better.
Freddie laughing loudly ended the kiss.
I looked over my shoulder and saw him standing next to the TV, hands pressed to the screen. Rolling my eyes, I got up and went to him. I scooped him up with lots of loud kisses and tickles.
‘I got you, Freddie!’ I declared.
He burst into more laughter. I swung him up then around a few times.
‘I think it’s nap time,’ I said afterwards.
‘No, mummy!’ he shouted, pressing his hands to my cheeks.
I blew a raspberry with my tongue and set him off giggling. Then I bundled him upstairs and into his bedroom. Surprisingly, it didn’t take him long to settle down. I turned on the nightlight which also played soft music. I read him a book and tugged him in. Watching him dozing and falling asleep for a few moments, I felt a burst of love and pride. Freddie had been my miracle baby.
For five years after Ty had been born, Dan and I had tried for another baby. Then we gave up. We were a happy family and complete. I didn’t feel the need for another child. However, in the spring of 2012 I thought I had cancer. It was a strange moment and connected to my gran’s scare. Luckily, she never had it and it was a bad chest infection. I though was declared pregnant.
Coming home from that appointment, I was debating, just like my mother and gran had when they had found out, if I should get an abortion or put the baby up for adoption. I was thirty-nine, a still okay age for a third dose of motherhood and the gap between Ty and Freddie was only nine years. Dan and I talked for months about it, but in the end I decided to keep Freddie and I knew the second I held him in my arms it had been the right choice.
Coming back, I patted Freddie’s arm and left him sleeping. Downstairs, Dan had changed the TV to the Formula 1 Grand Prix and was watching it. The diary still abandoned on the floor.
‘He’s sleeping,’ I announced.
‘Good. I was getting bored of Dora,’ Dan replied.
‘Really?’ I broke into laughter, ‘I thought you had a crush on her?’
Dan gripped me as I bent to pick up the diary. I wiggled against him as we tumbled back on the sofa.
‘I joked one time!’ he added.
Twisting out of his hold and back on my feet, I put the diary on the table.
‘And I just can’t let it go,’ I finished, ‘did you find anything else?’
‘No. I stopped reading.’
I sighed and sank down onto the sofa.
‘Your gran was a great writer,’ Dan added.
‘I’m starting to realise. But it’s not getting us anywhere!’
‘I’ve had another idea…’
‘Next weekend, we’ll get the kids to help us and we’ll scan the journals into computers. Then we can search keywords. That’ll speed everything up. Okay, it might take awhile to scan all the pages, but it’d be good to preserve your gran’s writing anyway,’ Dan explained.
I looked at him, ‘you really think that could work?’
‘Yes. My computer and Darla’s both have printers that can scan. And we can easily buy a scanner to hook up to your or Ty’s laptop. Then we can get the computers to find words like your name or your mum’s name or missing or whatever. Then we can just read those sections and we should pick up more information,’ Dan informed me.
I nodded, ‘that might be good…’
‘Then we could pass the diaries on to some history buffs.’
‘Or the police,’ I added.
‘I love it!’
I threw my arms around him, hugging him tightly. Dan laughed then kissed me. I pressed my lips harder against his and moaned aloud. Dan arranged us, so that I was laying on top of him and was comfortable underneath. The kissing continued, our lips and tongues dancing together. Then Dan slipped his hands into my cotton pants and under my underwear. He squeezed my bum, gently at first then harder. He rolled his hips against mine, bouncing us gently.
I ended the kiss and dragged in deep breaths. I felt torn for a few seconds as really we should get back to reading or starting on Dan’s idea. But these moments were getting harder to sneak in with two teenagers in the house. I almost voice my thoughts, but then Dan was shifting me off him and rolling us over.
Dan pulled down my pants and underwear. I reached to undo his trousers and he helped me whilst we carried on kissing. I felt his hands on my breasts. Then he’s fingers were sliding under my top and bra. I gasped and moaned against his mouth as contact was made.
He mumbled, ‘God, I love you,’ in my ear.
I tried to say it back, but the words were lost in another moan as I felt his hardness in-between my legs. He pushed into me and though I tried to keep quiet, I couldn’t help it and an ‘oh’ sound come out very loudly. I wrapped my arms and legs around his body, as Dan pressed his hands to a space just above my shoulders. He moved slowly at first, kissing me often then he picked up the pace and sent us both over the edge.
After we curled up together and watched the ending of the Grand Prix.
To Be Continued…