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The Drifter Chapter Four

When a drifter unleashes the wildness of a shy woman, she runs away with him.
Before leaving the ranch I cleaned up my messy truck. This meant clearing the littered passenger seat and floor of several paper coffee cups, candy wrappers, a crumpled potato chip bag, crumbs and the classified section of the newspaper with the circled ad I answered—also, a few old cassette tapes which I put back in the glove compartment. l parked next to the barn and hosed the truck down to wash away the grime. I had a cab on the back of the truck where I slept and crawled into it to clean that out. I had a shaggy gray rug and placed my sleeping bag and backpack on it. I moved my tool box out of the way and put my books in a pile then glanced at the porno magazine I used for my fantasy wanks and wondered if I should hide it. Nah! She knows I'm a guy on road...I have nothing to hide.

It was still early and I had a few hours to kill before meeting Carla at Betty's diner which was just five miles away. I remembered her telling me about Peter's Pond where she used to ride her horse, Daisy and decided to see if I could find it. I knew it was in the North Pasture so I drove up the hill where her grandfather worked the day before and found it at the far end. I imagined Carla riding there and swimming while Daisy was tied to the big shade tree nearby.

I sat in the truck and looked out at the still water, then looked around at the expanse of land and wondered what it would be like to work for her grandfather, but quickly dismissed that idea. Oklahoma was just a place I was passing through as I explored Route Sixty-six and doubted I'd ever come back this way. I thought about Carla growing up here before moving to Jay when her mother remarried and wondered if she would ever want to come back to her roots.

I got out of the truck and leaned against the front and looked up at the sun getting higher and how the pink clouds cast a pink glow on the dark water. I thought about Carla running away with me. Would our relationship evolve into something deeper, or would I be a stepping stone to someone else, someplace else? One day at a time I muttered half to myself, half out loud.

Forty-five minutes later, I arrived at Betty's Diner which opened at seven. I glanced up at the clock over the front door and saw it was eight-fifteen. It was half empty, but quickly filled up as more people came in, mostly men wearing flannel shirts, jeans and cowboy hats. They sat at the counter on the round red leather stools and leaned over their coffee mugs and talked to one another in loud, boisterous voices. A few older women dressed in skirts and frilly blouses came in and sat at the front booth and chatted. I noticed they all wore red lipstick. I guessed they were secretaries, bank tellers or salesgirls. I'm a people watcher and try to imagine what their lives are like. 

I sat at a booth at the rear of the diner and ordered a coffee from a tall, young woman with red hair and freckles, wearing a pink waitress uniform with the name Renee stitched on it.

“Coffee. Is that it?” she asked, ready to write my order.

“For now. I'm waiting for someone...then I'll order some breakfast.”

Sipping my coffee, I looked out the window at cars and pickup trucks pulling in and pulling out, big tractor trucks rushing by in both directions. Several trucks were loaded with bales of hay and I realized other ranchers were doing what I had just done. I half listened to the twangy music playing from a radio. I glanced up at the clock on the wall over the front door. It was almost nine and wondered if Carla would show up, but then I saw her truck pull in and park next to mine.

She was wearing tight jeans with her cowboy boots, a pale blue T-shirt and the unbuttoned flannel shirt she wore in the barn. Her dusty brown hair was in a ponytail that fell just below her shoulders. When she looked up and saw me through the window, I could tell she was excited by her smile and remembered her tense, shy smile when we first met. Damn she's pretty, I thought and watched her walk to the entrance, carrying a small green backpack.

“Well, here I am.” She sat down and placed her backpack next to her.

“So, you're really going to do this?”

“Yes. I bet you thought I'd back out, didn't you?”

“I don't know.” I shrugged.

“I'm all set. I have a suitcase I took from Granny and took some of the clothes I kept there. She won't even know it's gone and I already stopped at Dustin's garage and he said I could keep my truck there, so I'll take it there when we leave and we'll be on our way.”

"Does he know why?”

“No and he didn't ask, but I think he wanted to. He looked at me kind of funny. Betty will figure it out if she sees us. You can't fool Betty. I hope I can tell her.”

"Really. You want to tell her. Maybe we should leave so she doesn't see us.” I looked around to see if she was there, even though I didn't know what she looked like.

“Don't be worried. I want to tell her. She's cool and I'm famished. When she hears what I'm doing, she'll say great. She won't tell a soul. I know her and she's got a wild streak. She told me lots of stories when I babysat. She'll say, 'Go for it.'”

When the waitress came over, she said, “Hi Carla. Ain't seen you for awhile.”

“I know. I came for the haying at my Grandpa's.”

Renee nodded and glanced at me then back at Carla and knew she was sizing me up and wondering what was going on.

“Are you ready to order?” She looked at me like I was a specimen in a microscope.

Carla didn't even look at the menu. “The hotcakes are great here...that's what I'm having.”

“Then I'll have that with eggs up and sausage.” I looked up at Renee while she wrote it down and noticed her red lipstick and that she was chewing gum.

“Me, too,” Carla said. “I just want the hot cakes and no sausage. And I'm dying for a cup of coffee.”

When Renee left, Carla leaned back. Her unbuttoned flannel shirt opened and I glanced at her t-shirt straining against her breasts and could see she wasn't wearing a bra.

Carla knew where I was looking but didn't say a word.

“You look pretty sexy. Do you ever wear a bra?”

“I hate bras...only wear them when I'm at school or church. Does that bother you?” She smiled. “Oh, and the youth center,” she added and chuckled.

“No, it doesn't bother me. I like that you don't. Is it your way of rebelling?”

“I don't know. Maybe. Sometimes they jiggle too much, but I told you I like when guys look at me...even though I don't know what to do. I get tense. I hate being so shy.” She smiled at me. “I like that I'm not shy with you.”

“I'm curious about something. Do you think women dress to attract men or dress to please themselves?”

“I don't know for sure. I think some women do and some women don't know if they do or not. It's hard being a women in our culture. Sex is all over the place...in advertisements, in the movies, in the music and most men gawk even if they try to hide it.”

“It's confusing for men, too, but I always look at a sexy woman.” I took a sip of coffee and looked at her over the rim of my mug.

Carla smiled and gazed into my eyes, then leaned forward and whispered. “I like how you look at me.”

“Good.” I nodded and returned her smile..

“I read something in some magazine. Maybe it was People. Not sure. Anyway some famous female philosopher from France said, 'Men like watching women and women like being watched.' I think that's true.”

Listening to Carla and learning more about how she thought fascinated me. I wanted to find out what made her so shy and frightened and what she wanted for her life. I remembered the conversation we had at dinner about security, how she really didn't want to be an accountant but was convinced to go for a degree so that she could work for her Uncle Charley. I remembered how she knew she needed an adventure in order to release her hidden self, and here she was sitting in Betty's Diner with me. I could feel her intelligence, her need, her yearning and passion to feel alive and saw me as her way to escape. Looking at her I wondered, Is it possible to escape or do you always bring who you are with you?

Just then, I looked up and saw a tall, plump woman with bleached blonde hair walking towards our table. She wore black slacks and a green T-shirt with the word Betty's Diner written across the front. A small white apron folded in half was wrapped around her waist. Behind her was Renee bringing us our breakfast.

Betty stopped a few tables away, smiled and said something to the customers, then came to us and sat down next to Carla.

“Thought that was you,” she said, hugging her then glanced at me.

Renee put our plates down in front of us. “Here we go,”she said and placed the Log Cabin syrup in the center of the table. “Let me know if you want anything else.” She glanced at me again and smiled.

“How's it going, Carla?” Betty asked. “Been awhile since I seen you.”

“I'm good. By the way this is Josh, my new friend.” She looked at me then back at Betty. “He worked at the ranch yesterday.”

“Pleased to meet you,” she said and reached across the table to shake my hand. She had a real Oklahoma twang which was much stronger than Carla's.

“Nice place, you have here,” I said, looking at her and could see she was sizing me up but pretending not to.

“Thanks...keeps me busy. So, what are doing in our neck of the woods?”

“Passing through. Did some haying yesterday for Carla's grandfather and now I'm moving on.”

“Where you heading?” She glanced at Carla then back at me.

“Not sure. Wherever I can find a little work.”

I sliced up my hot cakes and took a bite. I knew she was trying to figure out why we were together.

“Sounds exciting. Not being tied down. Never thought I'd have a diner, but here I am.”

“Well, I never thought I'd be on the road like this, but here I am. I needed to get away, so I packed up my truck a month or so ago and took off.”

Betty nodded. “I know what you mean. I grew up around here and wanted to go someplace. I wanted to go to New York and get a career in something, but married Dustin right out of high school, had two kids and there I was. Then I saw this place was for sale and here I am fourteen goin' on fifteen years later.
Carla babysat for the kids for a few years when she was in high school and we've been friends ever since. I love her like she was my own. That's my story.”

Carla glanced at me and took a deep breath. She looked out the window and then took a gulp of coffee. She looked down at her plate and glanced back at me. She bit her lower lip and it looked like she was wanting to say something but was hesitating.

Betty turned to her and narrowed her eyes. “Okay, out with it. I can see something's going on with you. I can read you like a book.”

“ Promise you won't tell.” Carla put down her fork.

“ Of course. You know you can trust me. What is it? You're not pregnant are you?”

“ I'm going with him.” She took a deep breath and looked at Betty for her reaction.

Betty didn't respond, but made a low grunt as she absorbed what she heard. She glanced at me then back at Carla.

“ I need to do this. I need to get away from here. I know what you're thinking.” Carla looked at me then looked back at Betty.

“ You do, do you?” Betty smiled and shook her head.

“ You're thinking how could I take off with someone I just met yesterday.” Carla's eyes were fixed on Betty's eyes as if trying to read her mind.

“Well, yes, that sure crossed my mind.” Betty narrowed her eyes and bit her lower lip as she thought. “It's pretty crazy. Risky.”

“You always said, 'trust your intuition.' Well, that's what I'm doing. It feels right. He knows me like no one else.”

“That's not true, Carla. I know you like no one else. I knew you weren't happy pleasing everyone. You've been depressed for years. I could see you were all locked up and wanting to burst free. I saw it in your art work...those drawings and paintings you did when the kids were napping. I saw your passion and we talked a lot. I knew you were an artist. Do you remember what I told you when you were about to marry that guy, Allen, the one who wanted to be a doctor.”

I listened to Betty, eager to hear what she was saying about Carla. I knew she almost married and remember how she said it would have been a mistake. I knew there was a lot we didn't know about each other, that it was crazy and risky, like Betty said. I didn't know Carla was an artist, but then so much was hidden and bursting to be free.

“Yes, I remember what you said,” Carla responded. “You said I needed someone as strong and passionate as I was and that Allen would end up boring me to death. I knew you were right, but my mom and my stepfather wanted to send me to a shrink when I broke it off. They said, Allen would take care of me and I'd have security.”

“Right. But you would have ended up cheating on him. You'd have kids and you'd be divorced in five years. I saw it all. You'd end up like a lot of women around here who did what they were supposed to and now they're miserable and reading romance books and watching porn while their husbands get drunk.”

“How long have you been married?” I asked, interrupting her.

“ Going on seventeen years.” She smiled. “We've had our ups and downs but he's a good man. Stubborn, but I really love the guy even when he's a goof-ball.”

“Cool.”I nodded. “My marriage didn't last five. We were definitely not on the same page. No kids, though.”

I managed to finish my breakfast during the conversation, but Carla hardly ate. I wanted to get going, but knew she wanted to know what Betty thought, wanted her approval and the certainty she wouldn't tell anyone.

Betty nodded and I could see by the way she looked at me, she was wondering if I'd be good for Carla. I smiled at her and met her eyes. She turned to Carla and took her hand.

“I won't tell a soul except Dustin and he won't tell.”

“I already asked him if I could keep my truck there for awhile but didn't tell him why. Please don't tell Dustin what I'm doing. I don't want him to know. I know he won't approve. Don't say a word to him...please.”

Betty didn't say anything at first, but I could tell by the way she looked at Carla she was bothered, but then she nodded and put her arm around Carla and hugged her. “Okay, I won't tell him. It'll be our
secret. I won't say a word.” She smiled. “You got my blessings. Go for it.”

She glanced at me. “You look like a good man. I can see you're kind and Carla wouldn't choose to go with you unless she knew it was right for her. It might not last forever, but so what. Life's about learning.”

She turned around to look back at the counter, then at the door and saw people waiting to be seated. She stood up and smiled,“Finish your breakfast and take one day at a time.”

“That's my philosophy,” I said.

“Mine too. Anything else is a guess. My grandpa always said, 'The only thing that's certain is that nothing is certain.'”

“That's for sure.” I chuckled.

“I'll write to you,” Carla said. “I love you...thanks for being a friend.”

“Love you, too.” Betty leaned over and hugged Carla and kissed her on the forehead. She smiled and nodded at me then rushed to the front door.

“Told you she'd say, 'go for it.'” She took a deep breath as if relieved and smiled.

Before we left, she said, “When Dustin's not looking, take my suitcase from my truck and put it in yours.”

 I followed her to Dustin's garage next door and parked next to her truck. When she hopped out, she grabbed her green backpack and ran up to him.

He was a big bear of a man with a pot belly, a graying goatee, faded overalls and an old black baseball cap. I sat in my truck for a moment and looked around at his front yard which was littered with car parts, a pile of old tires, a tow truck with Dustin's Garage painted on the side and a row of cars parked along the edge of his property, waiting to be repaired.

When she stood in front of him so that his back was facing me, I got out of my truck, opened her passenger door, grabbed her suitcase, and put it in the back of my truck. He turned around when he heard my door slam when I got back in. He glanced at me then continued talking to Carla.

When she ran back to my truck, she turned to wave at him and yelled, “The keys are in the truck.”

I looked over at Dustin as he watched Carla climb into my truck and knew he was puzzled by the way he narrowed his eyes. I put my arm out my window and waved. He nodded back but stood there looking at me. I watched Carla place her small green backpack on the floor then glanced up and saw Dustin watching us.

I didn't say anything when I turned on the ignition. I backed up and turned around and drove towards the road. I glanced in my rear view mirror and saw Dustin was still watching us while I waited for the traffic to pass. I saw him take out a pencil from his shirt pocket and a small notebook and write something down, I was sure it was my license number. “That's interesting,” I thought and pulled out onto the highway.

It felt strange having a passenger after over a month of being alone. I glanced over at her as we turned right onto Route Sixty-six and drove past Betty's Diner and headed west—where to? I wasn't certain.

“So, are you ready for an adventure?”

“I think so. It feels weird. I've never done anything like this. My mom usually calls me everyday and when I don't answer after a day or two, she'll worry, then she'll call my grandparents and they'll worry. My mom is such a worrier. I hate making her worry.”

“You said your friend Hannah will cover for you.” I glanced at her and could see by her scrunched eyebrows, she was upset and thinking.

“She will, but I didn't let my mom know I was going there. I should call, but I hate lying.”

“So what are you going to do?

“Don't know. This is really hard. I never rock the boat but keep things to myself.” She closed her eyes
and took a deep breath, holding it in, then slowly exhaled. “What should I do?”

“I'm not going to tell you what to do. I never tell people what they should do. You said you needed to get away. You needed this...so deal with it.” I glanced at her and knew I was sounding gruff.

“Are you angry at me? You sound upset. Are you sorry you're taking me?”

“No, I'm not angry and I don't know if I'm sorry I'm taking you with me. This is weird for me too, but you have to take charge of your life.”

“I'm trying. That's why I'm in this truck with you, but I told you, I've always done what other people think I should do.” She turned away and looked out the side window and sighed—something she did a lot.

I didn't say a word and let the heavy silence fill the space. I thought about turning on the radio, but kept my eyes straight ahead and drove behind a slow truck filled with hay bales. I noticed a plaque on the side of the road with gold-plated writing that said Historic Scenic Highway and below that the words, “The Mother Road” and remembered when I read Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath, that the Oakies named it that on their way to California.

We were both quiet. After a few silent minutes, Carla reached into the pocket of her flannel shirt, took out her cell phone, hit a key and listened before speaking then left a message.“ Mom, don't worry. I'm at Hannah's for a few days.”

She took a deep breath and stared at the phone then quickly closed it and shook her head. I could see how disturbed she was as she put the phone back in her shirt pocket. “I left a message.”

“ You also lied.”

“ I know.” She looked at me. “Fuck! Why am I such a wimp?”

“ You're not a wimp. Sometimes you have to tell a lie to be honest to yourself.”

“ I hate lying to my mom. I mean it's not the first time. It's like when my granny was shocked that I had a beer. I don't want to be the goody goody they think I am. They don't know the real me.”

“ I do.”

“ I know.” She looked at me and smiled. “I want to be the real me with you. You'll see.”

“ What will I see?”

“ You'll find out I'm insatiable.” She reached over and put her hand on my thigh, moving it close to my cock and smiled, biting her lower lip.

I put my hand on her thigh, moving it slowly closer to her crotch but not touching, teasing her and smiled, “I'm insatiable too.”

I was glad that the mood had changed. Still, I knew it would take awhile before she really broke free and became more comfortable. Neither of us spoke, but the sexual tension made me aware of the adventure we were both on.

I remembered my own struggle to become free of my family's expectations. My father was a surgeon at Einstein Hospital in Philadelphia where I grew up—Doctor Ezra Wiseman. My mother was a high school principal. When I dropped out of college in my junior year and moved to Vermont to join a communal farm in the nineties, they tried to be supportive like good progressive liberals, but I became too radical for them. They were aware of the corruption and inequality, but also comfortable and secure. I remember reading somewhere, “Security is the enemy of the people.”

I hated the hypocrisy of their lives and we argued a lot. They knew the system was built on war and exploitation of other countries in order to keep our country secure and prosperous. They were opposed to the wars and went on protests and signed petitions, but still, they enjoyed their big house, including a house on Long Beach Island, two cars and lived a pretty extravagant upper middle class life.

When I was in college I knew I couldn't be a doctor like my dad hoped. I was aware that our dependence on oil and the globalization by multi- national corporations would only get worse and that our consumer-oriented society was not only dependent on the exploitation of slave labor in third world countries, it was also unsustainable. They weren't happy when I dropped out.

The commune was good for awhile. We were all drop-outs, but we were floundering. I lived with a woman named Vicky, but she was a trust fund hippie rebelling against her upper middle class family, like me, except I didn't have a trust fund and had to work. She wanted to get married and didn't want me to be a carpenter, but that was all I could do to make some money. I'm not sure what she wanted me to be, but I left the farm and Vicki after we had a big blowup. I saw the commune fall apart because of drugs and selfishness. I knew so many people my age who were lost, frustrated and angry.

I moved to Maine and worked as a carpenter for a boat builder and married an artist named Lee. Neither of us wanted to have children, but when she had a bad reaction to birth control pills, I decided to have a vasectomy. I also realized marriage was not for me. I started writing stories and more and more knew that's what I wanted to do, but it bothered Lee that I wasn't there for her like she wanted. When I wasn't working at the boatyard, I wrote. We fought a lot. Finally, I said, “I'm out of here,” and we got a divorce.

Two years ago I went to the Occupy Wall Street to protest the way banks have this country by the balls until that got busted by the police. After that I was pretty lost. So I decided to hit the road and take Route Sixty-six to California, never expecting to meet Carla and here we were drifting west, one day at time. My plan was to eventually go to Bolinas in northern California where my friends Steve and Catherine lived. I hadn't seen them in over ten years. They had a daughter, Zoe who was eight or nine when they left.

While we were driving through one small town after another I noticed that Route Sixty-six was the Main Street of all of the towns. We drove past many famous places I had read about. We drove through through El Reno, Bridgeport and Talmadgeburg which was a boarded up ghost town. I told Carla a little history of the highway, how it was mostly a dirt and gravel road until the thirties then eventually got paved. In the fifties tourists traveled it and lots of businesses benefited from that. Nat King Cole had a hit record of the song, Get Your Kicks on Route Sixty Six. But then the highway wasn't being maintained and some parts got closed. When the interstate was built in the Sixties, Route Sixty-six got by-passed and lots of the business and towns had hard times, some of them becoming ghost towns. But then in the nineties it had a revival because of people wanting to go back in time and enjoy the legends about the highway. So a lot of business started up...mostly gaudy tourist traps.

Carla told me what she knew about the dust bowl days because her great grandmother told her stories from when she was a child and how hard it was to see and breathe and that lots of people died from lung disease. I told her about a Ken Burns documentary I had seen that said it was a ten year drought with huge wind-storms and that the same thing could happen today because of climate change.

She knew what I was talking about because of the drought that they were having and how hard it has been for her grandfather the last four years and her Uncle Charley's accounting firm was struggling.

After driving for a few hours, we stopped in a small town named Okemah because I knew that as where Woody Guthrie grew up. He was the hero to a lot of folk musicians I listened to like Bob Dylan and Rambling Jack Elliott. I told Carla about him and was surprised when she started singing Woody's song, This Land is Your Land. She said they learned about him in school and they sang that song, but she really didn't like his music.

I guess I wasn't surprised. He didn't have the best voice and his songs were about people struggling and the need for unions. She told me she listened to Christian Rock. When she said that I chuckled to myself but didn't respond.

We stopped at a small restaurant outside of Okemah that had pictures of Woody Guthrie's old house and lots of pictures of people from the depression wearing overalls and long dresses standing next to old cars.

Over lunch, I told her I was thinking we should head to a town I knew above San Francisco named Bolinas. I told her about my friends Steve and Catherine and their daughter, Zoe.

“Really, San Francisco? That's pretty far away. I never heard of Bolinas.”

“It's a really cool place and no one would ever find you there. It's off the beaten track and special.

“Why? What's so special about it?”

“It's hard to find the town because there aren't any signs. Every time the state puts up signs, the people take them down.”

Carla seemed puzzled and fascinated then asked why they did that.

“They don't want it to become a suburb of San Francisco. There's a book I read about it called, The Town That Fought to Save Itself. It was written in the late Seventies about how the people stopped a big sewer project that would have changed the town into a suburb of San Francisco. They had all kinds of protests and won. They stopped the project, but it also made the town famous and that's why they take
the signs down. A lot of the roads are still unpaved and unless you know how to find the town, you can't go there. They try to keep it a secret.”

Carla listened and I wondered what she thought. She leaned back and finished drinking her root beer then made a loud noise sipping at the ice through the straw while she gazed at me.

“What do you think about going there?” I asked and shoved my coffee mug aside and waited for her answer. I could see her thinking, nodding. I liked the way she narrowed her eyes as she thought.

“I want to go there. It sounds really interesting and you're right. Sounds like no one will find me there and it's far away.”

“Cool. It might take us a week to get there. I'll call my friend Steve and tell him we're on our way.”

I hadn't spoken to him in years. I took out my cell phone and called and wasn't surprised to hear him say, “Cool. We can put you up for awhile.”

I noticed how Carla was watching me as I talked. When I hung up, I said, “Good. You'll like him and his wife, Catherine. We go way back. It's amazing how I haven't talked to him in a few years and then he
picked up the phone it seemed like yesterday. I'm glad we're going there.”

We drove to the Oklahoma border and just as it was getting dark, decided it was time to stop for the night. I had been driving for six hours and except for filling up with gas, using the fairly clean bathrooms, getting coffee and some snacks, we chatted and then would be quiet. Carla dozed off and I glanced at her sleeping with her head against the door. I still found it difficult to believe this sweet, sexy woman was with me. I knew she was complicated and struggling with who she was and who she wanted to be. She's not alone, I thought. A few times, I reached over to touch her and she opened her eyes and smiled at me then fell back to sleep. Such a sweet smile. Maybe this will work out. We'll see.

There were a lot of motels and restaurants along the highway. When I stop at a motel I always like to know there's a diner nearby, or the motel has a restaurant attached. Just ahead I saw the Dixie Motel and down the road Johnny's Hotcake House.

When I stopped, Carla woke up and looked around. “Where are we?”

“Time to stop for the night. This looks like an okay place, a little shabby but there's a restaurant down the road.”

We got out and walked up to the small office with a sign on the green door that said, “Welcome” and below that “No Pets.”

No one was at the desk when we went into the tiny motel office. I rang the bell and a tall, skinny man with thick horn-rimmed glasses came out of a backroom to sign us in. He looked at both of us without a smile of greeting, took out a form from under the counter and stuttered, “Hhhhh how long?”

“Just the night,” I said, surprised that he stuttered and wondered if he was the owner or the owner's son.

“T-t-t-t that will b-b-be seventy f-f- five-dollars.” He straightened his glasses and stared at Carla then at me.

I handed him the seventy-five dollars I earned yesterday and saw that I had about twenty bucks left.

He turned the form he was writing on for us to sign. “N-n-need both of your names and y-y-your license n-n-number.”

I remembered seeing Dustin take my license number and wondered if this would be a problem, but dismissed the thought and wrote down my number. I was anxious to get to the room, take a shower then

get some dinner, but looking at Carla next to me in the office I noticed how beautiful and sexy she looked in her tight jeans the tight red T-shirt under her flannel shirt.
 
She was looking at the clerk, concentrating and studying his face and knew, like me, she was fascinated by people. I glanced at her and she smiled at me and bit her lower lip in a seductive way and suddenly knew I wanted to make mad passionate love to her. Maybe dinner can wait.

“C-c-check out is n-n-noon,” he said, sliding the key over the counter. While I signed my name on the form, he looked at Carla through his thick horn-rimmed glasses. I could see him moving his eyes up and down her body, obviously seeing what I was seeing and liking it. He straightened his glasses and stared at her when she signed her name.

“Enjoy your n-n-night,” he said, then looked down at the form. “You, too, c-c-Carla.” The way he grinned it was clear he knew we were going to have a hot night and I knew he was jealous.

Carla grabbed her suitcase from the back of my truck and handed me my backpack. When we walked to the door, feeling playful, I slapped her ass gently and didn't think anything of it. I was just feeling frisky.

She turned to me and smiled. “Mmm I like that.”

“You do?”

“Yes. It turns me on.”

“Hmm. I'm learning more things about you.”

So I slapped her ass harder and she moaned and I could feel both of us getting aroused even before I opened the door.

When we entered and I closed the door, we put our things down and she flopped on the bed on her stomach. Her ass strained her tight jeans. My cock immediately got hard. She turned her head to look at me.

“Come on and spank your bad girl.” She smiled and wiggled her ass, surprising me at what she was revealing.

Aside from the playful smack outside, I had never spanked a woman, but the way she smiled and invited me to spank her, excited me. Hmm, this is interesting.

She got up on her knees and wiggled her ass again. “I'm such a bad, dirty girl, come on spank me hard.”

I got on my knees behind her and looked down at her round ass wiggling and slapped her.

“Oh, I'm such a naughty girl....spank me... harder.”

I didn't know what fantasy she was acting out, or where her desire to be spanked came from, but I spanked her ass harder, then harder and felt her ass jiggle with each slap. I'm not certain what came over me or what my spanking unleashed in her, but it made my cock hard and suddenly I wanted to ravish her.

I pushed her hard onto her stomach and pounced on her and started grinding my throbbing hard cock against her jean covered ass. I suddenly wanted to possess her, take her, drive her insane. I grabbed her hands and lifted her arms above her head, our fingers entwined then I hissed into her ear, “I'm going to fuck your brains out.”

I heard her gasp and squirm under me and knew she was as hot as I was. She lifted her self and pushed her ass against my hard cock forcing me to grind and hump her round ass harder. I don't know what came over me, but I knew I wanted to dominate her and could feel her desire to have me do whatever I wanted. With my hard cock pressed against the crack in her ass through her jeans, I took one of my hands from hers and reached under and cupped her pussy mound in my palm, gripping it, “Your cunt is mine.”

“Yeah! Talk dirty to me. Fuck your bad little girl.”

She gasped and started thrusting herself against my hand. With each movement, my cock pressed harder against her ass. She was doing all she could to fuck my hand. I couldn't stand it and wanted to take her and fuck her as hard as I could. We were both getting hotter, hornier and desperate.

My hand gripped her pussy tighter while I humped her ass harder.

“Own me!” She lifted and turned to face me above her. “Take me! Make me yours!”

No woman had ever said that to me, but her words were taking me someplace I had never been, but it felt right. She was bringing out something in me I was not aware of.

“Fuck me! Fuck me! I need your cock now!”

I flipped her roughly onto her back. She spread her legs and I pounced on her, both of us fucking through our jeans. I leaned forward and we kissed wildly, our tongues dueling while our bodies slammed against each other desperate to fuck each other, the barrier of our clothes driving us crazy with lust.

I got up on my knees between her legs and unbuttoned my jeans while she did the same. We moved frantically to get our clothes off. I pulled my t-shirt over my head and lowered my jeans, pushing them off while she lifted her ass, pushing her jeans over her hips. I moved forward, grabbed her tight jeans and peeled them off, taking her soaked panties at the same time.

I saw her eyes looking at my hard cock sticking straight out as I hovered over her. I took my cock and moved the head up and down her dripping pussy lips while she writhed under me. When my cock grazed her clit she jolted. “Don't tease me! Don't tease me! Fuck me! Take me!”

I reared back and rammed my cock into her tight pussy as hard as I could. I went all the way with one thrust then pulled out and thrust again and again, faster and harder while she lifted her ass and I drove her back to the bed, my cock filling her with each hard thrust.

“Harder! Harder!” Her screams filled the room and urged me to thrust as hard as I could.

We were both sweating and the bed was banging against the wall. My cock was swelling and I knew I was getting close and could feel her tensing, trembling. Her tight pussy squeezed my cock. “Oh, my God. I'm cumming. I'm cumming. Fuck me!”

When she erupted in wild convulsions, her pussy spasms gripped my cock. Her loud screams urged me to thrust faster and harder. My whole body tensed and trembled. My orgasm crested and rose like a huge wave ready to sweep me away. Her tight pussy squeezed my swollen cock. I kept thrusting harder and harder, faster and faster, my need to release suddenly hit like a volcano and I erupted in a wild, huge orgasm that ripped through my body. Hot gushes of my cum shot out of me like lava and filled her overflowing pussy. Both of us screamed at the top of our lungs. I writhed in ecstasy and kept thrusting until the last of my cum shot into her tight pussy causing her to convulse and scream even louder, “Oh, my God. I'm cumming again. Keep fucking me!”

When I collapsed on her, unable to budge, she wrapped her arms and legs around me in an intense embrace. I could hear her sobbing and remembered how she cried in the barn last night.

I lifted my head and wiped a tear with my finger. She smiled, even though there were tears in her eyes. Her face was flushed and her hair was splayed on the pillow.

“You're beautiful.” I kissed her lips gently.

“Thank you and thank you for taking me with you.” Her eyes were wet, her sweet voice almost a whisper.

“One day at a time, my dear,” I said, glad she was with me and surprised how it all began with my spanking her. I was fascinated by her wild and passionate imagination. She was right, maybe I wouldn't be sorry.

 We kissed tenderly.

“You surprise me.” I said, softly.

“Good! See what happens when you don't have expectations. I might have more surprises for you.” She laughed.

“Is that so?”

She lifted her head and kissed me, then said. “I'm famished.”

Ten minutes later we walked into Johnny's Hot Cake House and sat at a booth towards the rear. It was busy and noisy. Country-western music was playing.

She reached over the table and took my hands and smiled. “Did I surprise you when I wanted you to spank me.”

“Yes. I never did that before. You're saying you're a bad girl and wanting me to spank you surprised me, but I got into it. Where did that come from?”

“I don't know. Maybe it's being sick of being a good girl. I sneak and watch porn and wait until I tell you some things Hannah and I do. I have this insatiable desire to be fucked hard, to be ravished. I have a wild imagination and lot of fantasies. That was one of them.”

I listened to her confessing and knew she hoped I would fulfill her wild sexual desires and that taking off with me was part of the adventure she craved. I was her way to sexual freedom.

“Sounds like we're going to have a fun trip.”

“You don't know how much I need this.”

“I think I do. You want to escape the boredom and emptiness of your life and want to live on the edge. You want to feel alive.”

“You're right.” She nodded and smiled. “I love how you know me. It's liberating and I trust you will not hurt me.”

“We're not so different, Carla.”

“I know. I can tell a lot about you by how we fuck.”

“What can you tell?”

“That you're passionate and you're also escaping your empty life. You're searching for something real and honest. That's why you're kind of drifting.

I nodded. “Maybe we're all drifters...even people who think they're not.”

“I think you're right.”

When she said that I knew Carla was special. She was smart, honest and passionate and loved sex as much as I did.

“I'm glad you decided to take me with you. I know you're a loner and don't want complications. I know what you meant by living one day at a time and having no expectations, but I think we could be good for each other.”

“We'll see,” I said and felt a swelling sweep over me that I hadn't felt in a longtime and wondered if I was falling in love with her. I didn't know. I was confused.

We had hamburgers and fries, then headed back to the Dixie Motel. Both of us were exhausted. We cuddled and kissed. I loved the way she lay half on me with her head on my shoulder. It felt good to hold each other and feel close, but just before we fell asleep, her cell phone rang. She picked it up from the night table next to the bed and looked at who was calling.

“On no. It's my mom.”

She didn't answer but held the phone to her ear and waited for the message. She pressed a button so that I could hear.

“I know you're not at Hannah's and that you left your truck at Dustin's and left with some stranger. You're making a big mistake. I'm worried about you. Call me. Please call me. Come home.”

She closed her eyes and looked at me. Neither of us spoke.

“What are you going to do?” I finally asked.

“I'm not going to call her. I know she's upset, but I'm determined to do this. I don't want to hear her worried voice and her begging me to come home. Damn it, this is hard.”

“I didn't tell you, but Dustin took down my license number. If your mom calls the police, they could find us.”

“Oh no. That jerk. Betty doesn't know him like I do.”

“What do you mean?

“When I babysat, I could tell by how he looked at me and flirted, he wanted something to happen and I was just a teenager. I tried to keep my distance and avoid him, but he would come back to the house when Betty was at the diner and try to seduce me. I was seventeen, but he didn't care. Nothing ever happened. I dealt with it because I loved the kids and knew how much Betty needed me to babysit. I also know he cheated on her in the back of his garage and he knows I knew. I could never tell Betty.”

“So that's why he took my license number. He didn't like seeing you taking off with another man.”

“I guess that's right. I don't know for sure, but my mom called my grandparents and they know what
you look like. I know she's going to call the police.”

I didn't say anything, but could see Carla was upset and thinking. I knew it was risky helping her run away, but I didn't think this would happen. I was torn. I didn't want to be in trouble with the law, but I was falling in love with her and now, more than anything wanted her to escape and find the freedom to be who she was and not what everyone expected.

I took her hand. “We'll make it.”

“I'm sorry I'm getting you in trouble. I didn't think she would find out so soon.”

“We'll make it,” I repeated. “Let's get some sleep.”

We kissed goodnight, but we both lay awake in the dark wondering what would happen.

(to be continued)

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