Charles had positioned the mirrors deliberately, one to the front and one to the side, from the cameras hidden away in the corners of his room he could see the action from the front, side and the alternate angles in the respective reflections.
He had a routine that he liked, it was his thing, what worked for him, it seemed to work for the ladies too so why change it?
There’s just something about watching yourself have sex in a mirror, like watching your own private movie as it happens.
Carla, liked to be dirty, she loved looking at herself, as he fucked her from behind or as she pushed her breasts in his face while she sat astride him in the chair.
Even the prim and proper Geraldine enjoyed watching herself making love, although she always felt self-conscious until the passion was in full flow and all inhibitions were abandoned.
Carla had just sent a text saying that her mum had arrived and was watching the kids for a few hours and that she’d be at his in 10 minutes.
He sent her a kiss in response and poured two glasses of Prosecco in readiness.
Most of the women Charles met had never been with a man as sophisticated or as devious.
They were either younger woman taken in by his good looks and charm, or woman who had been around the block a few times and were just looking for some adult company and some fun.
But most women in their late 30s or above had already been there and bought the t-shirt, some even had a wardrobe full of those particular t-shirts.
Most were looking for a relationship and accepted his advances in the hope that he was the real deal and the early lustful romance would develop in to everything that they desired.
These women weren’t fools, they didn’t waste time hanging around with married men, that’s why having his love-nest was invaluable for giving the impression that he was genuinely single.
Charles was more than aware of what the woman wanted, he was handsome, funny, charming and he was happy to play along as far as he could until they became serious and wanted more than he could give.
Do you think that Is a fair exchange?
Take Carla for example, she has her children most of the time and a struggling budget.
When she’s with Charles she is wined, dined and pleasured like never before, then goes home to the kids with a smile on her face and occasionally a limp.
She’s not looking for anything else, she doesn’t want a permanent relationship, just someone who reminds her how it is to feel alive now and then.
Does that make it okay?
That she wasn’t expecting anything more?
What if Carla knew he was married and still with Michelle, and still wanted to see him as long as he kept their affair separate from his home life?
Is that any better?
What about Geraldine, she knew what she was getting into, she knew that Charles was married, it was her desperation for something more than he could offer that brought him to his bed.
Charles knew that she agonised about the affair, that occasionally she wanted it to stop and had called it off on a few occasions, but she always came back for more.
There were lots of other women that he met on the dating sites he frequented, a real mix of women from all backgrounds and he was happy to show them a good time, but there was no-one that he was prepared to leave Michelle for.
In his quieter more self-aware moments he thought of that, questioned himself, if he was so unhappy, why didn’t he just leave?
But why leave to nothing?
Why leave your destiny in the hands of other people? Why move into a shitty little flat alone?
Why not plan ahead?
Feather you’re bed and prepare a soft landing when you do decide to leave?
Despicable or understandable?
Would it help to know that Charles wasn’t all bad?
His behaviour was reprehensible not just to his wife, but to every woman that he lied and cheated to, that was beyond doubt.
But he loved his kids dearly, he was a good father, played his part and had no problem in being an unappreciated taxi-driver taking them to their various clubs
He was happy to play his part and let Michelle have some time on her own as he knew that she did the vast majority of the child care.
The truth was he just loved spending time with them, particularly when they were younger and called him “daddy”.
Those big innocent looking up at him as if he was their hero, that he could do anything, fix any problem, fight any monster that came in the night.
Some of his favourite times were when they were younger and he would sit watching tv with a baby in each arm, there were only 13 months between them. They were both babies, they’d always be his babies.
Even nowadays with them almost teenagers, some of his favourite times were just sitting watching a movie together, he knew that the simple things were best, that spending time with his kids was precious as they wouldn’t be kids forever.
He’d had a mixed relationship with his father, he’d provided guidance, rules on life, how to conduct business, when to speak, when to listen and to always keep his cards close to his chest.
But his father had been emotionless, not once had Charles been hugged and told that he was loved or that his father was proud of him.
The irony being, that although his mother provided all the affection that any child would need, all the love, kisses and hugs that any child craves it wasn’t enough.
Charles wanted to be loved by his father, so he tried really hard to please him, worked hard at school, play hard at rugby with his father watching from the side-lines, occasionally applauding or an occasional well-done would be enough to make him feel proud for a while, to do more an attempt to defrost that cold exterior.
He thought about that often, he appreciated that back in those days, men didn’t show their emotions as much as they did or were expected to do nowadays.
He wondered if that coldness was what made him love his kids so much and want to spend time with them?
Years ago, when things were good with Michelle and they had discussed his relationship with his father. She had laughed when he said that there’s a psychology degree thesis in there somewhere.
Things were good then, they both loved the kids and they were a proper family.
Now he couldn’t stand being in her company and couldn’t wait until his plans came to fruition and he could live the life he wanted.
Now that the kids were older, he was making his plans and getting ready to leave.
Then he wouldn’t feel as guilty for cheating on Michelle,
Charles was a thinker, he knew that he was doing wrong.
He also knew that most people were more complex than they appear at surface level, we all have our history, the things we’ve experienced in child-hood, schooldays and early relationships have an impact on our self-esteem, our self-image and a knock-on effect the rest of our lives that’s hard to shake.
It still doesn’t make his behaviour any better does it?
Charles knew that the affairs weren’t justifiable at any level.
But does being miserable and staying because of his kids make the affairs any more understandable?
Should you walk a mile in his shoes before you judge him?
Or is wrong just wrong?
The doorbell rang to signal Carla’s arrival. Charles started the video cameras rolling in the bedroom and smiled as he walked to open the front-door knowing that Carla would be dressed for the occasion.
Wow .. feel dirty writing that, but wanted to add a bit about Charles inner workings .. just for discussion .. because you know that he’s wrong .. but is it justifiable to do the wrong things just so that you can do the right thing by your kids?
Many people do.
Story drawing to a conclusion .. If you’ve read any, Michelle is now on to him, apart from tying up some loose ends, it’s time that Charles got his just desserts!
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Friday night and it’s been a long week .. looking forward to seeing my mates this weekend .. not been out with Stephen for a while and with my old mate Brian on our own since we were in our 20s.
Isn’t it strange how you have pals who you’ll always be pals with but don’t see each other all the time.
I hadn’t seen Brian for a long while until I met him on the train a few months ago. It will be good to catch up.
Although, I bet we still laugh at all the things we did in our teens.
We were heroes .. we are still heroes .. we will always be heroes!