The Ericsen’s and the Brownstone’s couldn’t have been happier that their children had finally come to their senses, and saw what a sweet couple they made. Tom and Lydia held hands, and gazed into each others eyes at just the right moments. Tom’s parents suggested that they have a party together, and invite only the best of the best young people. Since Ralph suggested it first, Tom was silent. Lydia declined saying that since Tom wasn’t in private school anymore, his friends wouldn’t fit in. It would be best if they socialized independently of school friends. Tom knew if he’d said anything like that, he could expect the strap later on, but the fact that Lydia said it, made everything okay.
Tom kept looking at his watch so he’d be on time to Patsy’s Pizza to meet Animal for part two of their plan. Mr. Ericsen had called Tom into his office, and Tom was nervous. He was pacing like a tiger.
“Sit down Thomas. Going steady at age sixteen isn’t that unusual, but I want to warn you... Be careful. You’ve already been more intimate with Brownstone’s daughter than you should have been. So don’t you be feeling up Lydia again. And, I don’t care that you said it was just on the outside of her clothes. Keep that one clean. If you and Lydia get along, and stay together, that’s fine. She comes from money just as you do. If you marry her, and she isn’t all you want in the bedroom, well, there are ways to get around that problem. I think you’re realizing that already. The riff raff you’ve been bringing around here is really stacked. You dinked her yet?”
“What?” Tom’s heart fell to his stomach.
“Don’t tell me your brother never talked to you about dinking.”
“Don’t know what you’re talking about Dad. Want to tell me some more about it?”
“Look I saw you with your hands on her tits... She sounds like she’s hot to trot. Figure it out yourself, or she’ll show you the ropes.” Ralph shook his head. “You got enough money for tonight?”
“I don’t know, we ate two pizza’s for lunch, and Lydia pumped nickels in the juke box all afternoon.”
Ralph tossed him another ten, and again told him to get lost.
Tommy felt his dad was a real square, and couldn’t wait to get out of there. He wished his brother would have told him something about “dinking”. Most of the time it was really good with Renée, but sometimes, like today, they still fumbled a bit. No matter what, they always enjoyed each others company. He hoped he’d be able to see her tonight. With what happened in the barn with his father walking in, no matter what she did, he could not stiffen. However that did not stop him from giving her all the pleasure he could imagine, and enjoying the cries of her delight. Feeling a little selfish now, he wanted his, and hoped the plan cooked up between himself, Animal, and Lydia would come to pass. Sadly, he forgot to let Renée in on the plot.
Animal wasn’t there yet, so Tom sat down, and ordered a coke. He was flipping through the songs on the tabletop record selecter when an okay looking girl came up to the booth. Tom was about to tell her that he’d already been waited on when she slid in across from him.
“Hello, my name is Jenny Verona. Are you Tom Ericsen?” The bleach blonde asked.
“Yeah, I’m Tom. Pleased to meet you Jenny.”
“Angelo, errr Animal said you were lookin’ for a date tonight.” She sounded doubtful.
“Well, yes... but do we have to talk here?”
“Do you know of anyplace else?”
“How about my car?”
“That’s as good a place as any.”
The parking lot was full of kids milling about, as Tom opened the door for Jenny, and closed it as soon as she was seated. He knew they’d been seen. But, lingered a bit longer for effect. “Jenny, do you want to talk here, or do you want to talk someplace else.”
“Depends on how much talking you want to do.”
“We need to talk a lot. Let’s go.” Tom started the engine, and drove off toward Rattalee Lake Road. He stopped by the now familiar maple tree.
“Okay, so Tommy what do you want?”
“I want you to be like my girl friend.”
“Like your girlfriend? Not your girlfriend.”
“So if I’m ‘like’ your girlfriend, does that mean I don’t get to date others?”
“No, you can go out with anyone you want. Just be willing to be seen with me a few times a week.”
“Just be seen with you?”
“Well, I never... Tom, most guys don’t want to be seen with me. They want to take me to their favorite parking place, and do it.”
“Well, I’m not that kind of guy.”
“Well, I’m that kind of girl. It’s all fine and dandy to be seen with you, but I need what I get from those guys. I’m not sure you know what I mean.”
“Get what you want from those guys. I’m not looking to dink around with you.”
“Oh yeah, right. You just want to be ‘seen’ with me. Let me put it a little plainer, if I have to be ‘seen’ with you, I need to be paid the same as if I was dinking around with you. You see, it’s not the dinking I’m interested in. It’s the bread. Got it now Ivy League?”
Tom looked at Jenny long and deep. “Are you saying the guys you go out with pay you to...”
“You got it Tommy. I get paid $1.00 for my handy work, $2.00 for lip service, and $5.00 for all the way. First time is a freebie.”
“Well, that’s nice Jenny, but let’s not, and say we did, okay? How about that?”
“How about you kiss my butt?”
“I said ‘How about if you kiss my butt?’ I’m supposed feel honored that you want to claim me, yet I’m not supposed to know what kind of goods you got?”
“I didn’t think it would be so damn complicated. All I want is a party doll to be seen with, and I’m willing to pay. What do you want from me?”
“Well, for one, I want to see what you’re packing. Anyone asks me how you’re hung, what am I supposed to say? Feels like he’s usin’ a pencil?” Jenny had been with a lot of boys. None had ever offered to pay for nothing. This made him more intriguing. She grabbed his crotch.
“Shut up! And let me at least feel what you’ve got to offer. You ever been with a girl? Intimately I mean.”
“Good. I hate cherries. Just sit back, and enjoy.” Jenny worked him up, and was very impressed with her own handiwork. She unzipped his pants, and went face down on him. When he was done, she opened the door, and spit. That stunned him. Renée had never done that before, spit that is. He felt bad that this had happened, but he didn’t really know what to do to stop it. It was enjoyable, but empty. It was nothing like being with his beautiful Renée.
“You got a big one Ericsen. I think I’d enjoy that, but not tonight. Like I said this is a freebie, now I need move on to the next one who wants to pay me five bucks.”
“Jenny... Look, I’m serious, I don’t want to go all the way with you. If you feel you know me well enough now to talk, then talk. Talk all you want. The more you talk, the better. I’ll pay you ten dollars for what you just did, and ten dollars every time we’re seen together, and you don’t ever have to do anything to me again. How does that sound?”
“Mama Mia, the first salami I’d like to roll, and he wants to pay me for nothing. Sure, Tommy, you’re the customer. For ten bucks, whatever you want.”
Tommy drove her back to the pizza parlor, and was devastated to see Renée there sitting with her brother, and Animal. She took one look at him with Jenny, and ran to the bathroom crying.
“Renée! Come out of there. Please! Come out, Renée. Please come out. Please...” Tommy was despondent. “Animal, Bjørn, please keep her here until I get back! I’m going to get Lydia. She’ll know what to do.” Tommy peeled out of the parking lot like a speed demon toward the Brownstone residence. He ran up the steps of the veranda and frantically rang the bell. Lydia was soon called to the door.
“Lyd, please, can you get out of the house tonight? I’m in as bad shape as you were in this morning. Please, you gotta help me.”
“Did your parents hit you?” She could see he’d been crying.
“No, I wish they had rather than what really happened. Please Lydia... I’m a mess! Think fast.”
“Daddy, is it ok if I go out with Tommy? He’s really upset... he may be in trouble with the basketball coach, because he was seen with some other kids that were smoking.”
“Now that’s exactly what the Ericsen’s and we have been trying to tell you kids! You hang around with riff raff and next thing you know you are getting in the same trouble they are even when you are innocent. See? One rotten apple spoils the whole barrel.”
“Yes Daddy you and Mummy are right. I will be a better girl now that my eyes have been opened to the evils of the world. Can I... May I go out with Tommy for a little while.”
“Yes, honey, don’t forget your key. James will probably be off duty when you come home.”
“Lydia you are brilliant. I swear I’d laugh if I didn’t feel so damn awful right now.”
“Well, tell me what happened.”
“I met up with Jenny. We left Patsy’s with plenty of witnesses. I took her out to park, just to talk about our plan. She ended up wanting to do what I only wanted to pretend to do. Luckily she changed her mind, but she ummm, I don’t even know what you call it.”
“If you don’t know, then how would I know? Describe it.”
Tom gave her a very brief description.
“Oh man! People do that? I’ve seen dogs lick themselves. Sounds disgusting!”
“Well, from my side, it’s not so bad, as a matter of fact it’s, well it’s really none of your business. The problem is, I hadn’t had a chance to tell Renée the plan. Of all times, she’s sitting in Patsy’s Pizza with her brother and Animal when I showed up with Jenny. Look, I didn’t want to get that intimate with Jenny. It just kinda happened, and didn’t mean a thing. Now Renée’s in the ladies room, and I couldn’t get her to come out. Now that you’re here, could you go in and talk to her?”
“Sure, after all you’ve done for me I owe you. But, she doesn’t know what Jenny did to you, right?”
“Right, unless Jenny has told her by now. She didn’t know when we walked in. No one could know. We’d just come from the parking spot to Patsy’s.”
Hand in hand, Lydia and Tom walked into the pizza parlor. They were informed that Renée was still in the bathroom. Tom got all kinds of looks from the others there. They’d seen him come in with Jenny a half hour ago, saw Renée run crying into the bathroom, then he just walked in with a high class debutant right before their eyes. They all knew he was the new kid in school, and seemed to like the “rag doll”. But, they had no idea besides being a jock, he was a stud, too.
Lydia walked in the bathroom, and tapped lightly on the stall door. “Renée, it’s Lydia. Come on out, and talk to me.” All she heard was sniffling. “Renée, please listen, things aren’t always what they seem. Please come out so we can talk. I want to look you in the eyes when I tell you some things.”
A red eyed, tear stained beautiful girl walked out of the stall. Lydia reached to give her a sisterly hug. “Renée, let me see if Tommy will let me have the keys to his car. We don’t have to go anyplace, I just don’t want to talk to you in here where others can snoop into our private business. What I have to say may be shocking, but it’s the truth, and sadly sometimes the truth has to be turned into a lie. Does that make any sense?”
“Yah, I mean no. I mean I do not know anything any more. Tommy is min sanne kjærlighet. I am so sorry, I forget sometimes... my true love. I thought I was the same to him.”
“Shhh... don’t say another word until we talk. Don’t even talk to Tommy. Let me do the talking. Follow my lead if you can.”
“Tommy, give me the keys to your car, please. Renée and I need to take this outside.”
“Lydia?” Tom was caught off guard.
“Just gimme the goddam keys Tommy! Geez! And, you straighten out her brother, too!” Since no one could see her face besides Animal, Tom and Bjørn, she winked, and gave them a huge grin.
Tom handed her the keys. Patsy’s Pizza patrons were silent over hearing the fiasco.