The Sound of Breaking Glass
by James Shaffer
Table of Contents|
parts: 1, 2, 3
“Is that the guy who met us outside school this morning? He’s a hunk,” observed Julia squeezing in between them by the window.
George was obliged to do the parent thing in front of Julia. “But your parents aren’t home.”
“He’s helping me study for my exams. Is that a problem, George? I don’t need a chaperone, do I?”
“Parents never want you to grow up. Some parents.” Julia put in her two cents. It sounded more like an accusation.
“What would your parents say?” George stayed on track with the parent questions.
“I think they’d be OK with it. You’re not going to tell on me, are you, George?” She smiled teasingly and bumped against him.
“I don’t know. I’ll have to give this some thought.” The tone of his voice hovered between teasing and being serious. Wide-eyed, she looked at him for a clue, but his face told nothing. She would have to interpret.
“Well, I got to go. Thank you again, George, for the dinner. It was delicious.”
“You’re welcome, Peggy,” he answered.
“Take you to school tomorrow, Julia?”
“Yeah. Great. Thanks.”
“Bye.” With that, she left.
Julia followed Peggy to the front door and when they’d said their goodbyes, Julia split off and ran upstairs to her room.
George’s remainder of the evening was a choice between a movie on Netflix or spreadsheets from the office. His mood dictated his choice. As he stretched out on the sofa and scrolled through the Netflix offerings, he pondered the remainder of Peggy Harrison’s evening.
The next thing he knew, the credits were rolling on an action film he’d missed, and it was almost 11:00 pm. He’d fallen asleep. Though he was sure the soundtrack of the film played subliminally in his head, he hadn’t dreamt of Vin Diesel or fast cars or fast women, or even Peggy. In fact, he hadn’t dreamt of anything. Oddly, his subconscious had remained undisturbed. He reasoned, Maybe reality has taken over.
Michelle would be home soon. George turned off the TV, pushed up off the sofa, walked to the front door to make sure it was locked and lumbered up the stairs. He left the lights on downstairs for Michelle when she returned. There was no light that leaked from under Julia’s door. It meant she was sleeping. He sauntered toward the bathroom.
He entered the bathroom and closed the door behind him. It was bathed in a soft glow of moonlight that streamed in the window. He flicked on the light and padded to the sink. The mirror above the sink still held the same reflection it had that morning.
George felt slightly askew, but still safe. He turned to the window. The moonglow was deadened by the room’s interior light, but he knew it was still there. He walked over to the window and looked across at the Harrisons’ house. The bathroom window was aglow.
He knew he was silhouetted in the window by his own bathroom’s light, but he didn’t care. It was a free world and the air space his gaze occupied between the houses wasn’t owned by anyone. He’d sold himself on that idea when in a flash she appeared at her own window.
There was no doubt that this time it was Peggy. The shade was still pulled halfway down, but she’d pushed her head between the shade and the glass so her face was visible. This time her arms were spread and her hands gripped the top of the sash window. She looked across and saw him.
“George! I’m home.” Michelle’s voice echoed outside the bathroom door. He kept his eyes on Peggy.
“I’m in the bathroom!” George answered.
“OK. I’m getting ready for bed. What a night!” Her voice drifted off in the direction of the bedroom.
You can say that again, thought George. He strode over and turned out the light then returned to the window. Peggy’s pert breasts bounced against the glass as she was being pumped from behind.
In the moonlight that remained, George thought he saw her smile. Is this a bribe or blackmail? Is it a ‘don’t tell my parents’ plea? Or is it a threat? he asked himself. George, ‘the pervert voyeur’, would have to remain silent about what he saw.
As he watched, Peggy pulled her head from behind the shade. He could see everything from the waist down, then the light went off.
Both bathrooms were now bathed in moonlight. He sat down on the edge of the bathtub until his erection subsided. Through the door, he heard Michelle’s voice in the hallway. He exited the bathroom just as Michelle hung up the hall phone.
“I can’t believe it! That little slut!” she said.
“What?” George asked.
“I was just closing the curtains in the bedroom when I saw the Harrisons’ daughter, Peggy, having sex! In plain view! I can’t believe it. I didn’t know she was there! I just called the Harrisons in Las Vegas.”
“Really!” George acted surprised.
“They’re going to call the house. They’ll sort it out,” she said.
“I can’t believe it. She took Julia to school this morning and had dinner with us tonight.” George held himself in check. “She said her boyfriend was coming over to help her study.” Cover yourself, George thought. Julia knows.
“That didn’t look like studying to me,” Michelle answered.
They each got ready for bed. He slid beneath the covers and curled up next to her. He pressed against her. He was hard. “Are you too tired?” he asked.
“Not after what I’ve just seen,” she answered. He heard a smile in her voice. “Were we like that at that age?” George didn’t think it was a rhetorical question.
“I remember a time at your parents’ cabin,” he said.
She laughed. “My parents were in the next room.” He rolled over on top of her. She was face down. “We had to be quiet.” She opened for him like a flower come to full bloom. “It was hot.”
They both awakened to the sound of breaking glass. The bedside clock said 3:06. He jumped from the bed, startled and disoriented.
“What was that!” asked Michelle. She sat up.
“I don’t know. Let me check,” George answered. He eased himself from the bed and grabbed his robe. He opened the bedroom door and listened. Silence. The edge of Julia’s door was still in darkness. It hadn’t awakened her. He moved through the upstairs hall and waited for a sign, a noise, anything. The unfamiliar feeling of a fresh air current swept past his legs.
He pushed open the bathroom door and turned on the light. Shards of glass spread out like a fan across the blue-tiled surface. In the middle of the floor was a brick. Written across its surface was the message: DIRTY OLD MAN!
Michelle appeared at his shoulder. “George. What have you done?”
George looked at her. It wasn’t even his fault. “I did nothing,” he answered, “I just watched.” He held the offending brick between his hands.
Michelle stepped in close and abruptly slapped his face and punched him in the chest. George didn’t retreat. He took his punishment. She backed out of the bathroom and knowingly turned and walked away. He watched her go.
He looked back at the jagged, black hole in the window glass. I can fix the window, but kiss the good life goodbye, George thought.
Copyright © 2014 by James Shaffer