Will a holiday in South America solve all their problems?






‘I’ve been a thief since I was very young,’ Clive said after a rather energetic and hectic round of lovemaking. Jessica was just coming down from her cloud, and she wasn’t sure weather she was tired, disconcerted by, or had miss-heard what he’d said.


Clive studied her reaction. ‘Yes, you heard correctly. I said I like stealing things. I’ve done it all my life.’


‘I remember stealing trinkets from my mother’s dressing table.’


He got out of bed and poured himself a glass of wine. He stood naked at the window drinking and looking out across the sprawling city. ‘Then I took my best friends most prized possession. A set of collectable cards of cowboys given out by our local cinema at Saturday morning matinees. At he time he was devastated, and he only found out who’d taken them many years later when I eventually told him. And even then I think he always held it against me. Until he died, anyway, because he’s dead now.’




They’d been in the swank latin American hotel for about a week when he described another of what he called turning point in his life.


‘I remember when I bought my first dildo,’ he told her as he placed batteries into a sleeve in a long, black, lumpy apparatus. ‘Not for me, I mean. No, no, nothing like that. I know it’s becoming fashionable for men, but I’m not quite there yet. No, I mean for one of my first girlfriends. In those days it was illegal to advertise this kind of thing, so the manufacturers called them neck massagers.’ Clive laughed. ‘Can you believe that? Who on earth needs a neck massage?’

Jessica lay enjoying the unseen charges flowing from the mental stimuli and anticipation that preceeded and unlocked the internal fluctuation of hormones and anticipating the arousal that always followed the physical stimulation of erogenous and physically sensitive zones.


Clive was biting at the packaging that housed the batteries. ‘Of course I’m talking about long before the days of online shopping, which is where I got this interesting looking little number. Well, not so little, I suppose. In those days you’d see small classifieds, that’s what they were called. Advertisements, that is, in local newspapers. In amongst ads for used cars, paint, carpets and cheap holidays. Anyway, there they were. These old, black and white photos of women holding a weird looking thingo up to their faces. So, in fact, they were massaging themselves as far as possible from the area they’d been designed for.’ He sniggered. ‘If you get what I mean.’


So. When he’d first shown it to her, she had difficulty hiding her surprise. ‘What on earth’s that, Clive? Something to tether a horse to?’


While he was preparing to make it work she studied his no longer quite so slim brown body. He was dark, velvety brown, with curly, long, black hair and a perfect complexion. His mixed ancestry had provided the genes that resulted in a well-built but wiry physique. His face had the chiseled appearance of a rugged, perhaps slightly unfinished ebony carving. His eyes were almost black. And he was circumcised. For whatever reason, but certainly not religious, he’d been ritually deprived of his foreskin soon after birth. Perhaps it was simply the custom in his country. Jessica never knew whether this aspect was a positive or negative in other men, but in Clive, weather or not there is any relationship between sexual prowess and this ritual assault on the male body (as it’s deemed to be today), he was certainly pretty good in bed.


And now he was ready, she could see that quite clearly. In more ways than one. Because the machine was buzzing. Ready for action, as they say. And quite excited about it. That was abundantly apparent as well.




One doesn’t have to be a member of MENSA or president of the crossword solving society to discern that this kind of extended holiday is destined not to last. Especially when it’s been paid for with money that should rightfully have still been in a pension fund.


Eventually everything started to go pear-shaped as cracks developed in their relationship. Money was no object because it was not theirs, but even other people’s money has a tendency to run out.


They moved into a cheaper hotel, and not long afterwards were forced into a really cheap hotel.


And then their physical relationship started to unwind. Perhaps it was because Jessica decided she didn’t like something he did, or maybe she thought involving other partners was not quite her thing at that particular time, or it’s possible that she decided that sexual activities with too much alcohol or chemical substances or too many mechanical sex toys or just too much sex was beginning to pall.


Whatever it was, when she woke up one morning in what was a rather dingy room, Clive was gone. Which meant she was in trouble. A long way from home. A foreign country. Poor language skills. And, worst of all, penniless.


To cut what’s getting to be a long short story short, Brian came to the rescue. Humble pie behind her, and after several weeks of very trying experiences, he provided the wherewithal and Jessica eventually flew home on a budget airline. He was at the airport to meet her.


Please don’t enquire whether they lived together happily ever after. That’s beside the point. And who cares anyway? The important issue now, is to find out what happened to Clive.


Well, he stayed on with what was left of the money he’d extorted which seems a little euphemistic, because stolen would probably be a better way to describe it. But eventually he decided that he’d return home, hoping he’d find a way not to face the music. 

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