A Proper Frame of Mind
Lionel Lee Markham
I am not a suburban sexual revolutionary. Never was, not even back in the days when membership was almost a must, particularly for chic young marrieds who, if they turned down a friendly little fondle on a Saturday evening over a bubbling fondue, could be marked by contemporaries as hopelessly pass‚, even worst-of-all, reactionary Republicans.

It wasn't because we ... Richard and I ... weren't tempted. We were, hundreds of times. Richard ... nobody calls him Dick ... has a sexual appetite which can best be described as avaricious, even on its off-days. And my own glandular secretions could hold up to the best of them. It was just that we had to be so careful.

Richard is the Director for the Department of Properties Management of the Board of Education of a small, none-too-prosperous upstate Pennsylvania school district where any taint of scandal, any suggestion of lascivious living would have been viewed by the Superintendent of School as negatively as a charter membership in Hell's Angels. And with our suburban split-level mortgaged for thirty years and a car with a bigger monthly payment than the total cost of my first clunker, we had to maintain our conventional image at all costs. Directors of Departments of Property Management don't even have the job security and tenure of a teacher. They're just hired year-to-year by the school board. So like it or not, we had to conform.

And it wasn't because our up-tight neighborhood and the Lutheran- Evangelical-dominated school board had driven sex to some dim and obscure corner of our minds. Far from it. Sex was up there boldly in front every day. By conservative count, Richard and I had orgasmed in virtually every possible spot in every room of the house including the top of my Steinway grand piano before we'd lived there through our first year. And sometimes, a passionate roll around the living room floor on a hot, stormy August evening when all of our friends were at the beach or taking themselves off to the mountains was about all we could afford. Cash was tight.

Which was really the reason that this story came about. For reasons which I could never understand, an elderly aunt had offered to pay my college costs if I'd major in music. I did and even became rather a good pianist, not good enough to perform, you understand, but certainly, as the cliche goes, good enough to teach. I'd applied to the County for a position as a music teacher at the same time that Richard, freshly degreed in Business Administration, applied for his job. He got his and the county figured they'd done enough for the two of us. The man ought to earn the wages.

So a few years back I'd placed an advertisement on the bulletin board of our supermarket. The furnace blower which had never really worked since we moved in decided to die in January just as the holiday bills were coming in, leaving our bank account embarrassingly low. "Wanted", my ad said, "piano students, beginners or advanced, for lessons in my home." I might as well, I thought, turn my expensive degree into some sort of income. The phone wasn't long in ringing and within a few months I'd managed to take on a dozen or so pupils. It was fun and I enjoyed it. They ran the gamut from the little six-year old Zabriski twins, to the Baptist minister's wife who had an exasperating proclivity to improvise on Bach, to old Mr. Kennerly who waited until he was sixty-seven to uncover an amazing musical talent.

But there was one above everyone else. Joyce. Joyce was the only one with an innate feel for the piano. Joyce worked part time as a computer graphics specialist for the town's single architectural firm and attended the local liberal arts college in the evenings. She was working toward a music major just as I had done. The difference was that, while I was certainly more experienced, she played with a born-in talent and had a technique that turned me green with envy every time she touched the keyboard.

I liked her the first time she came in, a tall, slender, strong- jawed angular girl with dark eyes that flashed with animation when she looked at you and straight darkish hair cropped close as though she scissored it herself in a moment of total absentmindedness. She was dressed in a nondescript shapeless dark blue pullover sweater and a grubby pair of Addidas sneakers. The jeans she wore weren't designer, not by any means. All in all, Joyce was the sort you'd not notice twice if you passed her in the supermarket unless you had an opportunity to talk to her. Then she'd emerge as a warm, purposeful, self-contained, and very communicative person, the little trifle of superficial stiffness and formality melting away as soon as someone opened up and was outgoing with her.

And after a few sessions at the piano with her, I felt as though I'd known her for ages. Joyce had that almost studied informality and plain-as-grass honesty that reminded me of the girls in my college dorm back in the `seventies. She was a refreshing change from some of the O-so-very-proper Yuppies of the up-tight Eighties who, for God's sake, started to wear white gloves on a movie date all over again, if you can believe it. And she liked me. I could tell. Unlike many of my other students, Joyce would find some excuse or another to stay and talk for an extra few minutes after our session. She had two passions, the first being the piano. I wasn't surprised. Given her native talent I could sense that she poured a lot of suppressed creativity into the keyboard. After the lesson, we'd find ourselves lingering over a cup of coffee, comparing the keyboard chromatic progressions of Chopin to those of Schubert or some other equally obscure piece of musical esoterica. She had an good, sound, creative and first- rate mind. Her other overriding passion was sex.

I found out about this during one of our first post-lesson coffee- klatsch sessions. It all started innocently enough ... a girl-to- girl question about, as I recall, spotting between periods or something equally glandular and innocuous. "Don't worry about it," I told her. "unless it gets persistent. It's not too uncommon, they say, if you're on the pill. Just try a little less strenuous sex during that part off your cycle." I don't know why I assumed it, but it seemed logical to me that Joyce was sexually quite active. She laughed a wry little laugh. "I wish it were that simple, Irene," she said and then looked at me straight on with those dark and serious eyes. "Truth to tell, living in this town for me is like living in a convent. I live by myself, I go to work, I come here twice a week in the afternoons, go over to class in the evenings. I go home. If I'm not too tired, I masturbate once, go to sleep and do the same thing the next day." I was surprised just a bit and I almost blushed. Our friends and acquaintances in town just don't talk to Richard and me about their masturbatory habits. But it was totally refreshing. Again, it took me back to my college days where absolutely no subject was off limits.

Joyce told me a little of her life and it was a study in contrast ing lifestyles. Two years after graduation from a dinky midwestern junior college with an associate in fine arts, she found herself living on the West Coast, writing reviews of heavy-metal rock concerts for pretentious little literary magazines and I-hate- industry expos‚s for starry-eyed ecological journals which paid her nothing but promises and a pat on the ass, passing judgement on the quality of the latest marijuana strains, swimming nude at night in the Pacific and participating in sex orgies involving, by her admittedly foggy estimate, as many as twenty-five men in the same evening. Not once in those two years had she encountered a piano worthy of the name. Everyone played guitars, an instrument which she, as a musician, found hopelessly declass‚ when played chords- only.

After waking one morning with an incredible headache and a citation for possession of less than two grams of a Class II controlled substance, Joyce had said to hell with it all, took a job as a waitress and sent herself to computer programmer's school with an end-view of earning enough to send herself back to college for a bachelor's degree in music. She took the very first job the placement people had offered her ... here in town ... and resolved to leave in the past those things of the past. That is, everything but the sex part. She liked that too much.

Now if Joyce had an outgoing, glamorous personal style which was half the equal of her musical ability, she'd have been mobbed with dinner invitations and would have been granted a complimentary membership in that local institution for the geriatric and incompetent which its inmates fondly refer to as "our country club." But she didn't. She was too gray looking, too colorless, too angular for the few younger studs in town to give her much more than an indifferent glance. But then, nobody ever believed that that bunch was overly bright. If they'd known Joyce as I did, this story would have had a different ending.

By the next time Joyce came, a Tuesday afternoon, I felt that there wasn't much we couldn't talk about, given the intimate details of everything which she'd already discussed with perfect candor. And liking to hear a good first-person fuck story as much if not more than the next gal, I'd laid in a supply of bakery Danish to go with the coffee. That, I figured, would keep her for an extra hour or so.

This time the subtleties of Chopin were left at the starting gate. Conversation-wise, they never were in the running compared to a graphic description of the time when Joyce had two men at once in the rear of a Volkswagen Microbus while crossing the desert just north of Devil's Playground. "It was insufferably hot in the rear and all of us were sweating but nobody cared ..." I could imagine how she felt, the stifling heat, the perspiration mixing with the hot loads of thick semen running down her chin and the inside of her thighs. I envied her. Nothing that wild, that spontaneous ever happened to me. I reflexively wiggled my rear on the chair, trying for an instant to imagine it all. Joyce caught the motion. "Just remembering the heat makes me feel hot all over again too," she said with a knowing little grin at her obvious double-entendre.

Over the coffee refills she detailed a half-dozen masturbation techniques, one of which she swore she'd learned from an old Indian squaw at an Arizona trading post which involved a honey comb and a two-month old kid goat, and another of which was the now well- accepted shower technique with the flexible hose head held between the legs with the spray on coarse and the water just at body temperature, but which for some reason I hadn't tried at that time. Her description of her resulting continuing orgasms were things of creative beauty in themselves.

After the second coffee, I had to excuse myself and relieve my kidneys like I always do after two cups and I noticed that my panties were soaking wet in the crotch as I pulled them down to piss. I held it back for a second and probed myself deep with my fingers. I was wet, soaking wet and I considered taking myself off quickly right then and there but decided it wouldn't be fair to Joyce sitting there in the kitchen waiting for me to come back. Besides, it felt too good to rush it.

Feeling as sexually aroused as I did, with my head swimming just as it had when I'd first seen an illustrated fuck book when I was a senior in high school, I decided to swap a few of my own experi ences with Joyce, telling her how Richard had gotten me on top of the piano after we'd been watching a triple-X tape on the VCR when I'd made a run for the bedroom but how he couldn't wait, had caught me mid-living room and finished both of us off with me flat on my back on the polished mahogany lid, my hair hanging down over the keyboard and my legs clasped `round him, trying to kick his cut- offs down over his hips with my toes. Joyce sighed, looked vaguely far away, smiled and asked me quite forthrightly if Richard was really hung. I assured her he was. "I'm glad for you," she answered

I couldn't believe how late it had grown until I heard the thud of the front door as Richard closed it. Ten of six already. Joyce and I had explored every sexual theme I could have imagined, spending two hours by the clock but time slips by when you're enjoying yourself. Feeling almost embarrassed, I managed to call to him in the front hall in a reasonably calm and collected voice. "C'mon back in the kitchen, Richard. I want you to meet someone." "I'm glad he's home," I said to Joyce. "Don't be nervous. You'll like him. He's super!"

Richard fell into the spirit of the afternoon just like he'd been there from the beginning. After a few little perfunctory comments and politenesses on his and Joyce's part, the conversation somehow swung back to sex again and Richard's interest picked up rapidly. While we were playing around with vague generalities, Richard excused himself and went back to change out of his three-piece gray pinstripe, emerging again in a moment in some nicely worn dungarees and a soft flannel sport shirt, sans undershirt open half-way to his belt. Getting himself out of uniform and into something which showed off his broad shoulders, good thighs, and well-muscled arms was the first step in turning himself into my Richard, my kind of man. He poured himself the last cup of coffee from the Mr. Coffee and sat down at the table next to me.

Richard charmed Joyce just as I knew he would and within bare minutes she was as free and relaxed as she'd been before he came in. "It's not so important where you put your mouth," she would say, looking at Richard as forthrightly and as innocently as if she were explaining the advantages of a new mutual funds program, "as the precise way you use your tongue". And if she shocked Richard, he never gave a hint and with a colossal sang-froid, he'd grin and wiggle his right eyebrow at her in that devilishly cute way of his and counter with his own rather unique ways of oral gratification. But it was a coolness which I knew he was faking for all he was worth. I cut my eyes down to his lap and his cock was quite, quite visible down the inseam of his jeans. I slipped my hand under the table and brushed my fingers down the length. Beneath the softness of the cotton denim it felt as though he'd jammed a two-cell flashlight between flesh and fabric.

We could have gone on. Indeed I had no intention of even starting dinner until Richard glanced up at the clock over the stove. It was a quarter-after-seven. "How about staying for dinner, Joyce?" he asked. "I'm sure we can muster up something to eat." Joyce glanced at her wristwatch and her face fell. "Oh, my God, where has the afternoon gone? Golly, Irene," she said looking over at me with what was obvious disappointment, "I'd love to stay but I've got classes Tuesday through Thursday evenings."

I was sorry too. As turned on as I was, I was having a great time and I hated to see it come to an end. Besides, I knew neither of us would be long in orgasming after she would finally leave. "Well, our next session is Friday at three. Are you free that evening?" "I'm always free," she said, laughing at the expressed implication "...And I'd love to." She gathered her coat and music portfolio and gave both of us a light kiss on the cheek as she opened the door. "I don't know when I've had such a ... such a stimulating evening."

The door closed and we heard her feet on the gravel driveway and then the sound of her little Toyota coughing to life in the cool fall air. Richard turned and looked at me and then he grabbed me roughly and pulled me close. His voice was husky in my ear and his light evening's stubble of beard rubbed deliciously against my cheek. "For a solid hour, that girl talked solid pornography and I'm about ready to come in my shorts. For God's sake, skinny out of those pants and let's get ourselves in bed! His hand was almost trembling as he fumbled with the over-tight crotch of my jeans.

I kissed him passionately, thrilling to the solid mass of his body as he pushed me back against the wall, his hips grinding against me so that I could feel the pressure and weight of his cock through his pants. "Lover," I breathed, "I was ready to get mine off an hour ago, while you were still out on the damned freeway. I can't feel sorry for you. No pity at all!"

Somehow we made it back to the bedroom, grappling with each other all the way. Shedding my panties and bra and kicking off my loafers as I hit the bed, I sprawled backwards, my legs flung open for him, my hands and fingers massaging and probing the liquid of my cunt. Richard stood over me at the side of the bed, slowly and deliberately stripping off his shirt and unzipping his pants, pulling out his huge cock before his pants were down. His looked hotly at me as he stroked the skin of his rigid prick slowly and sensuously back and forth. He was close to orgasming. I could tell by the silvery wetness which had already spread itself over his entire length, from glistening crest down to the pubic hair. "I want you so damned bad, `Rene," he breathed.

I probed myself sensuously, my fingers exhaustively and properly trained not to take me over the top before I'd planned to let it happen. "Well, come get it, you beautiful stud," I purred up at him, "or I'm jolly well going to start without you."

He fucked me twice that night but it didn't take. Instead of being satisfied, it just seemed to get both of us more and more turned on. I thanked goodness that the next day was, fortunately, a state legal holiday with all state and local offices closed. He'd have been in no shape to work after what we were doing at three AM.

We had a big breakfast around eleven and talked, mostly about Joyce and what we'd already said and heard during the previous evening but it was still fun to go over it again in our minds. After we'd cleaned up the house from the night before and showered, Richard pulled out a stack of VCR cassettes, the X-rated kind which he always rented in lots of three or four from our local Video emporium with a John Wayne prominent at the top of his stack so that any local worthy who was browsing the racks at the same time wouldn't be able to see the meat of what he'd selected. We'd copy them at home in marathon sessions and after a year, had enough so that even if the county puritans closed the place down, we'd have a lifetime supply of sexy screenings. He pulled out one which we'd not seen.

It was passably good if a little contrived and in a few minutes it had the anticipated effect on Richard who, by now, was sprawled naked on the day bed, back against the wall, idly and half-heartedly masturbating while the action on the screen proceeded apace. And it affected me too, a bit more urgently. I didn't want to wait any longer before he entered me so I slipped aside my bathrobe, faced away from him and gingerly straddling him, lowered myself down to take him up inside of me. It was our accepted way to watch these cassettes, not particularly comfortable and generally Richard had to peep around my rear end to see what was happening on the screen, but it was the best technique we'd been able to devise. The person who invents a set of mirrors so that two people can screw comfortably and satisfyingly and watch TV at the same time can write his own check to wealth and fame.

But it was a warm and sexy way to spend a gusty, overcast day, warm and snug in our rec room, the phone set to busy and his warm penis snugged up deep inside of me. It was one of those long, loving indolent sex sessions which invariably end up with orgasms but not the immediate kind.

A particular orgy scene was turning Richard on. I could tell because his cock began to grow urgently hard inside of me and I had to shift position and he began to murmur wild and sexy things into my ear which had more effect on me than the video action. We've always been great fantasizers and some of my best comes have arrived simultaneously with a particularly lewd image forming in my brain. "Look at that, `Rene, the two girls. That drives me wild ..."

I looked. It was the usual low-budget girl-on-girl thing with forced moans which had more in common with the noises I'd make with a stomach ache more than with an orgasm. It was not a high-grade turn-on for me. "I'd like to see Joyce grab those beautiful tits of yours like that," he whispered huskily. "She's probably creaming in her panties every time she thinks about them. Playing with your nipples would probably drive that little minx out of her mind." I looked at the screen again. One of the girls was indeed sensually licking and tongueing the breasts of her partner who did in fact have beautiful mammary development. I wiggled delightfully on Richard's now fully arched and hard cock while he dropped one hand down to stroke my clit and placed the other over my breast, catching my now erect nipple between his thumb and forefinger.  

"I'll bet you'd like to feel Joyce play with them too, wouldn't you, Hon?" His voice was soft and deep and his breath tickled my ear as he brought his cheek closer to mine. "Can't you imagine how it would feel?" He tugged at my hard nipple, "Can you imagine Joyce making you come."

Suddenly the vision of Joyce hit me with a crystal clearness. It all came into focus. Moments before, I'd fantasized about how it would be in a three-way, with Richard fucking both of us ... and indeed he's quite capable of doing precisely that. But now my own body was telling me that the roles were reversed and my whole being was centered directly on Joyce and her body. And even more suddenly, surprisingly, my eyes flew wide open, my back arched and I drew in mybreath in a gasp just at the instant that my vaginal muscles tightened vise-like around his cock and forced him to orgasm deep within me. The thought of Joyce, of Richard offering me his permission, had acted like a trigger for my own orgasm. It hit from out of nowhere and was over with the suddenness of a thunderclap and it left me gasping for air. We collapsed, tumbled together on the day bed, with each of us laughing joyously and wickedly at the other.

I had too much time on my hands the next day. Mrs. Overholtz canceled in the morning and my only other scheduled student, little Barry Sclar with his galloping acne canceled out in the afternoon. I couldn't get my head clear. While trying to clean up breakfast dishes, images of Joyce, the urgent fuck on the bed when she left, the VCR and Richard's insistent fingers on my nipples and best of all the violent, completely foreign orgasm the echoes of which still rang in my skull and the strain of which still ached vaguely in my pelvis. By ten o'clock I'd had to change my panties which were drenched. I still flowed as though I'd had no sex in two weeks. I tried to sit down at the piano and play, concentrating my mind on the Schubert Opus 90 Number Four, a delightful rippling composition which, I suddenly remembered, was a piece that Joyce excelled in playing ... not like a music box, but fluid, and then I thought of my own fluids which seemed to gush. Fleetingly I wondered if I had somehow become a nymphomaniac.

I swallowed hard and picked up the phone and dialed, my hands shaking ever so slightly. "Joyce?" I heard her soft voice on the other end of the line: "Wait ... let me close the office door." I swallowed again. "I just called to confirm that you'll be ... coming over for dinner tomorrow night." I tried to effect a light, breezy tone. But her voice was heavy and sultry on the other end:

"Of course I will Irene. Ever since I left Tuesday night I've been counting the minutes." I relaxed. Somehow in the paranoia which has always marked me in moments of crisis and stress, I could imagine Joyce taking everything all wrong. "You and Richard are such wonderful people. I don't open up like that to everybody." ...and I guess I'm in need real friends since I left the Coast last year. I hope," she added, "that you don't think I have a one-track mind when it comes to sex."

I tried to make a joke of it. "Hell no. Richard and I enjoyed it. We were in bed fucking each other silly the minute you were out of the door." She paused. I could hear her breath against the mouthpiece.

"I could imagine! I had to make myself come as soon as I was clear of the lights on your street. I couldn't even wait until I was home in bed."

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