“It wasn’t always like this.” Jane explained softly. “When I first met him he was a real sweetheart, a charmer.”
“I know that tone Sarah, don’t give me that clinical tone like I’m one of your patients.” Jane blurted.
“You might as well be.” Sarah muttered under her breath.
“What was that?”
“I said you might as well be.” Jane’s friend replied curtly.
“Well shit,” was all Jane could manage in response.
“Look, I hear you complain every week about how Nathan is a jerk. How Nathan does this, and Nathan does that. I get that. I understand that. But what I don’t understand is how you can allow all of this to continue.”
“It’s–” Jane paused, not sure how to respond. Truthfully she couldn’t answer the question herself. “–it’s hard to explain.”
Sarah rolled her eyes. “It’s not healthy to continue down this path. I don’t understand why you don’t just file the papers and get a divorce already.”
“I–I don’t know really. It feels–wrong. Like I’m giving up.”
“But you’ve already given up.”
“No, I don’t think so. I–I keep trying.”
“Hun, I think it’s time to figure out an exit strategy.” Sarah said softly, placing her hand on Jane’s shoulder.
“No–I can’t. I–”
Sarah sighed. “It’s too bad couldn’t employ the services of one of my clients.” she blurted carelessly.
Sarah thought about it for a moment then started to explain, “Look, you can’t tell anyone about this ok? This is between you and me and no one else. Alright?”
“No you have to swear you’ll never tell another soul Janie. It could be my practice if you did.” Sarah threatened angrily.
“Fine. I swear I won’t tell anyone.”
“Swear on your dad.”
“Swear on your dad.”
“Fine, I swear on my dearly departed father’s soul that I won’t tell anyone. Satisfied?” Jane responded. She was irritated but the lengths that Sarah was going through to ensure her silence made this gossip all the more tantalizing.
“Ok. I still shouldn’t be telling you but–” Sarah looked side to side as if to ensure no one was watching them. The action was all the more ludicrous because the two women were sitting in Jane’s living room. “–this new client I have, he’s got a very interesting job.” She smirked and bit her lip.
Jane immediately noticed the signs that her friend was excited about this story. She had the same look on her face as when they went to a Justin Timberlake concert together. The giddy, excited, school girl look that was completely out of place on her ordinarily calm quiet and reserved body.
“Ok, I have to set the scene for you though.” Sarah pursed her lips and took a small breath.
“Wait.” Jane interrupted, “Wait–” she stood up from the couch she had been resting on and started off in the direction of the kitchen. Without looking for Sarah’s approval she waved her hand and giggled, “Let me get some wine first. This sounds like a story that needs wine.” comically shuffled off to the kitchen returning with a $200 bottle of Château Montrose and a pair of glasses to match.
Sarah raised her eyebrow at the wine. “Don’t hold back on my account.” she chirped.
“Oh shut up. It’s what’s available.” Jane shrugged. Her friend was a little more conservative with her money, but Sarah had the means, or at least her husband did. She finished pouring two glasses and took a quick sip of hers before plopping herself back onto the couch. “Ok. Ready.”
Sarah took a small sip of the wine and irritatingly acknowledged that it was delicious. “Ok where was I?”
“Setting the scene.”
“Right. So I get a message from my receptionist saying that she knows someone that would like to secure my services as a therapist.”
“Ok.” Jane nodded, taking another sip and waiting for Sarah to continue.
“She tells me, ‘You’re going to like this one.’ which makes me curious.” Sarah adjusted her position on the couch she was seated on, tucking her feet up under her. “She tells me that he works at odd hours and that he would prefer that I call him back to arrange a time when we could meet.”
Jane continued to nod, not sure why this was unusual.
“Normally she calls and sets the appointments.” Sarah explained, “That’s what she’s paid for, but this client wants me specifically to call him back. She told me that he wanted to hear my voice first before meeting me.”
“Oooh.” Jane mocked, before chuckling.
Sarah rolled her eyes and continued with a smirk. “So I’m curious. It’s a different request, but not too difficult to accomplish so I call him back.” She took another sip of wine and enjoyed the moment. Jane was looking at her expectantly and Sarah enjoyed the attention. “Anyways, so the phone’s ringing and ringing, so I’m getting ready to leave a message.”
“But then I hear him,” Sarah bit her lip, “he sounds like he’s slightly out of breath, like he ran to the phone or something.”
“But that’s not what’s going on.” Sarah grinned and took a small gulp of wine before placing the cup back down.
“Ok–so, what was going on then?”
“He says, ‘Just hold on a moment I’m just finishing up with this–meeting.’ and I respond, ‘Ok’”
Jane shrugged her shoulders and frowned, wondering if that was the punchline.
“Jane you had to hear this guy, he was like molten sex on the phone. Like that gravely bass manly man voice that makes you–just–quiver.” she giggled and then shook her head at her own silliness.
“Oh geez.” Jane responded, “Can we call him now?” she teased.
“No, but that’s not the best part yet.” Sarah looked at Jane with a mischievous grin. “There’s a little shuffling of the phone like he’s trying to cover it or something, but I can still hear everything.”
“At first I wasn’t sure what I was hearing, but then as I strained and listened a little harder I could hear a woman moaning.”
“Oh shit!” Jane exclaimed laughing.
“Ya! Exactly!” Sarah giggled, “So I hear her moaning, and moaning, then squealing, and pleading and begging and everything.”
“It was–it was really hot actually. He was making her beg for it, teasing her, making her cry for wanting it so bad–”
“Oh–she got it. She really got it.” Sarah chuckled. “Maybe a minute later there’s this loud scream and she’s swearing and cussing like a banshee before breaking into giggling.” Sarah bit her lip again as she let her imagination run, “–and then he gets back on the phone like nothing happened.”
Jane laughed and shook her head. “Hell of a meeting!”
“Exactly!” Sarah agreed. “So I talk to him for a bit and we arrange a time that works for both of us, all the while I’m trying not to squirm from what I just heard.”
Jane laughed, “That’s awesome. So then what happened when you had a session with him?”
Sarah smirked evily at Jane before continuing. “Right–so I’m waiting at the office and it’s late and everything. I’ve already sent Gwen home and I’m just sitting in my office reading.” Sarah took a sip of wine and licked her lips, “There’s a knock at my door right on time and in he steps.”
“Oh?” Jane leant forward, highly engrossed in the story.
“He’s like, ridiculous.” Sarah shook her head, “Like he just walked off the pages of GQ or something. Longish brown hair, expertly styled, these blue grey eyes that drill right through you, and then there’s the rest of him.” Sarah bit her lip again and raised her glass to her mouth taking another small sip.
“Good?” Jane asked.
Sarah nodded slowly, “Very. Like I said, straight out of GQ.”
“Tough job you’ve got there.” Jane laughed.
“It gets even better though.” Sarah chuckled and waited for her friend to think the statement over for a moment.
Jane cocked her head to the side like a dog trying to figure out what it’s master was saying.
Sarah nodded then gave Jane a look that made her friend realize there was a twist to this story.
“Wait; what does this guy do?”
“So here’s the part where you can’t talk about anything ok?
“Ya ya, I already swore and everything.” Jane blurted in annoyance.
“He fucks other men’s wives.”
“That–that’s his job?”
“In a manner of speaking.” Sarah confirmed.
Jane closed her legs tightly together and tried to hide her excitement. It had been sometime since her husband had satisfied her to any degree that she enjoyed. Hearing about a stud for hire was almost too titillating to bear.
Sarah continued to explain, “He gets hired by men to entice their wives to cheat on them.”
“–and when they do, the men file for divorce. The fact that their wives are cheating helps them get better settlements and my client makes a pretty penny helping them out this way.”
“What? Seriously? I didn’t–”
“–know that was a thing? Neither did I!”
“So he told you this over the phone?”
“No, he just came on the phone–no pun intended–and we talked a little bit about when he was available and when I had openings. Nothing really, just logistics and scheduling.”
“Oh, ok. But then how did you find out?”
“Because I’m his therapist Jane.” Sarah said condescendingly “–and he was coming to talk to me about possibly leaving his job for something else.”
“I see.” Jane nodded and finished the last sip of wine in her glass. She looked at the bottle for a moment and decided against refilling her glass. “But wait–you said it’s too bad that I couldn’t use his services. What did you mean by that?”
“No I don’t know. Explain it to me.”
“You’re unhappy. You need an extra push to get out of this marriage. If you hired my client maybe he could give you that extra push.”
Jane sat and stared at her friend for a moment. The look on Jane’s face was one of contempt, but deep down she was imagining how delicious that would be. As much as Jane was a prim and proper lady on the exterior she had cravings and needs that she hid from everyone, including her best friend. She wanted that extra push. She’s always wanted that extra push. Jane dreamed and fantasized about all manner of debauchery but her husband did not reciprocate her ravenous needs.
For him it seemed as if Jane was a trophy. She was to be placed upon a shelf, locked behind glass doors, to be looked upon but never touched. Aside from the occasional dusting Jane remained untouched. She led a life of a nun, but not by any choice she had made. It wasn’t always like this. That much was true. But the longer she stayed, the more depressed she became. It’s a terrible feeling to feel that your partner doesn’t find you attractive any more. She felt more like a companion, or a pet, than she felt like a wife.
The loneliness was oftentimes crippling. He would be gone on business trips for a week or more at a time and despite the fact that he was away, she was expected to remain in the house ready for a phone call from him that could happen at any point in the day. But Jane kept trying, she kept thinking that if she said the right thing, or wore the right dress, she would gain his attention once more.
“What I need is for my friend to understand I want her support, not her services as a pimp.” Jane said, picking up the two empty glasses and bottle of wine before walking off into the kitchen. As she did Jane felt herself questioning how honest she was being with her friend. She left the dropped off the glasses and bottle before returning to the living room. “At least not today.” she joked, trying to lighten the mood.
Sarah nodded and laughed. “Noted.”
Jane then smirked, “But you better tell me what happens next session. This story is just too juicy to keep to yourself.”
“We’ll see.” Sarah responded, giggling nervously, “We’ll see.”
“Well I better let you get going then.” Jane said abruptly, “I have a lot of work to do around her to get the house in shape.”
Sarah looked around at the room they were seated in and furrowed her brow, “What are you talking about, the place is immaculate.”
Jane shrugged, “Nathan likes it a certain way.”
“Uh huh.” Sarah responded, once more slipping into clinical mode.
Jane sighed, “Look it’s just a few quirks. It’s no big deal.” she lied.
“Ok, call me then.” Sarah said as she stood.
The two women hugged and Sarah made her way out the door towards her car. Jane watched as her friend drove away and she sighed. Nathan would be home tonight and she couldn’t summon the effort to pretend that she was excited to see him.