So Long Marianne

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“Come over to the window, my little darling, I’d like to hold your hand.” One last time then, after all that had happened; was she sure? Was I?

My mind went back to when we met, deep in that green lilac park. We were almost young then – well, young enough to hope, if old enough to fear. Looking back, I realised I had held onto her like she was some kind of crucifix; and now? Now it’s come to distances, and both of us must part. My eyes are soft, with sorrow. What sort of way is this to say goodbye?

I had loved her in the morning, her kisses deep and warming, her hair upon the pillow like a sleepy golden storm. She had loved many before, but for me this was new. How often had I noticed, in cities and in forests, people smiling at each other, as lovers do; but never me. Until her. But now, standing with her at that window, her eyes as hard as her heart, mine breaking, what was left to say – but goodbye?

How heady it had been, like fine wine freshly broached. But now there were just the dregs of the bitter lees – and the inevitable lies.

“You know that I have loved living this part of my life with you,” she said. My heart rose, treacherous and naive – to the very end of love. “But you make me forget so very much. I have responsibilities, things that I must do, and now he knows, I have to go. Our love will always matter to me, and I regret nothing, save the timing and the harm I have done to him. If we continue, it will end our marriage and damage his political career. I can’t go there. So, Marianne, it is time to say goodbye.”

It tasted bitter. That admixture of truth and lies, the latter turning the taste to gall. She had “loved living this part of her life” with me. What part was that; the stolen evenings; the borrowed weekends when he was busy; the “quickies” when suddenly she had time? All of these were interstices, marginal spaces, mattering more, I suddenly realised, to me. But now? The “love” would always matter to her, but not as much as his career – and what would go with it from her point of view.

I was not looking for another, I could not imagine it, as she walked me to the corner – our steps had always rhymed – at least I had thought it so.

We were one, but about to become two. She had said she would always be beside me, yet now I felt so alone, still tied to her by the spider’s web of my emotions for her; locked into place on the edge of despair. That, I thought, was no way to say, goodbye.

I was not looking for another, as I wandered in my time. Though she was going, my love for her refused to follow suite. I was still bound to her by chains which I could in no wise loose. But, I thought, let’s not talk of love, or chains or things we could not untie. My eyes were soft with sorrow. This was no way to say goodbye.

But like the shoreline and the sea, things change.

How naive had I been, to think that she could, or would, give up what she had for us? Had there ever really been an us?

In those first heady days, I had accepted that it was “difficult.” But now he was about to become Home Secretary, and though, as she said so often, “there was nothing between them anymore,” that was not true. There was a shared ambition. His career had been a joint enterprise. Now he was on the rise, and who could know where it would end, it was time to dump the surplus baggage – that would be me.

The Press (with a capital P) would be all over it – over us, and over me. She did not want that for me, she said, by way of excuse. She was breaking my heart to spare me pain! She, of course, was used to it. Tall, blonde, sexy in a classy way, she had been news even before she joined her fortunes with the rising hope of the Tory Party. Together they were the “glamour couple.” Could I understand, she asked?

It was a test of my love. I saw that. I smiled at Sincan Escort her, nodding, my loving acquiescence getting me a huskily whispered “good girl.”

She changed her name to his when he got into the Cabinet.

“Oh you know what the Press is like – and the voters too – it is just for appearances,” she had told me.

As they had scaled the heights, I had done all I could to help, even switching to his office as his executive assistant. I’d enjoyed my career in the Civil Service, but she convinced me that if I switched to working for him, it would be the best cover for “us.” So I did it, abandoning my chosen career path – for her, for us.

“Marianne, have you got those papers? Marianne, could you get the dry cleaning? Marianne, could you phone the PM’s office? Marianne, could you ignore the fact that I just groped your arse?”

I had them. I got it. I phoned. I ignored the pinches.

“Just his way, darling,” she said.

And then, when he went to the Commons for the debates, Jane would come in, lock the door and as she put it, “ravish the fuck out of me.” She’d smile, she’d pull me to her, kiss me passionately, then she’d push me to my knees and, lifting her skirt, reveal she’d abandoned her knickers before coming in.

“Eat me out you slut!”

And I would.

The thrill.

No one would come in. It was the unspoken rule of Westminster, if the door was closed, leave it – everybody knows that is how it goes. He’d be away a couple of hours. As I knelt and ran my tongue along the luscious crease of her cunny, shivers of erotic arousal shot through to my core. The way she gripped my head and rubbed herself against my face, commanding me to “push your fucking tongue onto my cunt, you bitch!” would almost make me orgasm.

She liked to cum hard and fast the first time. Then she liked me to take my time, lying with me on the chaise longue, with my nestling between her thighs, slowly circling her clit, or her asshole, or her nipples – and sometimes all three areas, before she came again.

Jane would giggle as she kissed me, tasting herself.

“Use the shower, clean yourself up Marianne.”

So I would.

By the time I emerged, she’d opened the windows, sprayed the office with fragrance to disguise the smell of cunt, and she’d found her knickers.

By the time he came back, the adrenaline flowing from the debate, I would be working on something or other, and I would smile, when he launched into the inevitably self-congratulatory account of his parliamentary triumph.

“Have you seen Jane? I hear she was about earlier, Security told me.”

“Oh she popped in,” I’d say, truthfully, “but as you were not here, she went,” I’d lie.

“Silly bitch,” he’d say on such occasions, “I told her that the debate was this afternoon. I don’t know why she even bothers to pop in if she takes no fucking interest in what I tell her.”

I’d smirk inwardly. “She comes to fuck me,” I’d think.

Was that wrong of me?

She was his wife, after all. Yes, but as she told me, it was for appearances. They had an open marriage. I’d seen the way he groped other women, and then there were those Thursday afternoons when he’d tell me to block his dairy for the rest of the day, ordering me only to contact him “if the sky is about to fall in.”

I saw “her” occasionally. A tall blonde. He had a type.

It was not like Westminster was famous for its faithful wives and husbands. I was hardly the only executive assistant to be hired as a cover for sex – even if I was the only one I knew who was fucking the boss’s wife.

It made it all so easy to believe what she told me. Had she deceived me? Or had I done that all by myself to myself?

I felt alone, as I had even when she had stood beside me that afternoon; so very alone. Cold, cold as a Escort Ankara new razor blade. That razor had cut off everything that had added colour. I had been curious about her, I had braved the risks of loving her, I had hidden myself, made myself small in order not be noticed. But just when I had climbed that whole mountainside, instead of a view of the heights, all I had was the mist of tears which obscured my view.

I had written my letter of resignation. “It is with regret…” and on it went, reducing to trite, conventional sentences the lava explosion in my heart. I felt as though I would explode myself.

“You are such a pretty one,” he had said, “but it has to stop. You and Jane,” he had said, just like that, matter of fact. There was no anger, no emotion at all. Had I known he had known? When did he find out? We had been so discreet: in the office when the House was in session; in my flat; in hotels. No texts, and calls were quick, easy to explain as his PA phoning his wife to update her.

My heart had skipped a beat.

“Marianne, you were fun for her, but you know I can’t have this now I am becoming a Cabinet Minister, not after the last bugger had to resign over hanky-panky with that Labour research assistant. Jane and I have to be squeaky clean.”

“And her?” I asked, referring to his girlfriend cum mistress.

“That’s my business – unless you want a shag too?”

He was insatiable, He would have too. I could see it in his eyes. I declined the honour.

And that was it.

Jane had left me in the room overlooking the park. Tears flowed. Self-pity is not an attractive emotion, but in the absence of anyone else, I threw myself a pity party that evening.

Then the morning dawned. It was not a dream. In fact being with Jane had been the dream.

I went to Portcullis House, maybe for the last time; who knew?

I bought myself a coffee to take to the office, and just as I was fumbling for my card a hand touched my shoulder:

“Can we talk?”

“Of course,” I said, before turning. My heart skipped a beat.

“I’m Danni.”

“I know who you are,” I said, as we sat by one of the expensive palm trees.

“You got dumped too?” So, I thought, the bastard had lied to me. How did anyone know when he was lying? Were his lips moving?

I nodded.

“They have to be squeaky clean.”

“Yeah,” Danni smiled sadly, “I got the same bullshit. You look like you had as crap a night as I did.”

I’d never actually talked with “her,” but I had seen her, often. Tall, with long blonde hair and one of those figures which a woman like me could only admire, with a tinge of envy.

“I’ve had better,” I said.

“You just going to take it?”

“What else is there to do?”

“We could go to the papers destroy the fucking bastards!”

I smiled – sad at her anger.

“And then we have to live with ourselves. Are you that sort of woman, Danni?”

“I could be!” She grinned, before sighing and adding, “we could think about it; what the fuck have we to lose?”

“We’re better than that,” I said.

“Speak for yourself, I feel so fucking angry. I should have known better. M fucking Ps!”

“Hey,” I smiled, “that’s my soon to be former boss you are slagging off.”

“Oh no!” She grimaced. “There’s me doing the woman scorned stuff, and you are losing your job as well as your lover.”

Her hand touched mine. She gave it a squeeze.

“You working today?”

“Emailed my notice last night, he just wants me out.”

“Well, I’m doing fuck all, so why don’t we throw ourselves a pity party?”

I smiled.

“I spent last night doing that.”

“Look, I have a shoot this afternoon, but what say we bugger off now and take a walk along the South Bank and forget it all?”

Grinning, I said yes.

I told Eryaman Escort Bayan the Receptionist to tell my boss that I was taking the day off. She grinned at me when she saw who I was with.

“You taking her to him then?”

I grinned. Let her guess.

As we walked out into the mid-morning traffic and the noise of Westminster Bridge, I suddenly felt a sense of relief. I looked up at Danni, who grinned at me.

“My flat is near here, what do you say to a goodbye to the bastards fuck?”

I grinned.

“Sounds fun – I take it you are bi?”

“Darling,” she said in an exaggerated and rather sexy drawl, “I just like sex, and Jane is, he tells me, a good fuck, so I am guessing you must be?”

‘Bastard!’ I thought. Of course, how naive I was.

Jane had always protested too much, now I thought about it.

“Oh we stopped fucking a long time ago. Oh we don’t do that. He’s busy with his women, and I have you.” Only that last one had the ring of truth.

Yes, he was busy with Danni, and others, but why had it never occurred to me that he was still fucking Jane? How stupid I was, how naive?

I looked at Danni. She was the most beautiful woman I had ever been this close to. As held my hand, and took me to her hotel suite, I felt the same pull that I had with Jane.

“You want me, don’t you, Marianne?”

That was what Jane had said.

How many had Danni said that to? Had anyone ever said no? Was I going to?

Truth was, I did want her. I looked into her eyes and saw myself falling deep into their lure. Then something happened. I looked at her. I nodded. And then, to our mutual shock I got up and headed to the door.

Somehow, I did not look back. I dared not look at myself in the lift. As though in a trance I walked out into the Strand and headed for the Thames. I could feel myself begin to shake. I sat on a bench and watched the river go by.

It felt strange, like a diver pulled from the vasty deep too soon. From having an overwhelming schedule and the constant need to find time for Jane, to this.

I must have sat there for an hour, maybe more.

How could I have refused Danni?

Because, a voice came to me, that would have been to have repeated the same mistake; fool me once, okay, fool me twice and I would be fool.

Then, as I came to the Tube station, I saw the “Standard” newspaper.

“MP in sex scandal, the beautiful Danni tells all… see pages 2-3 and 5-6.”

The picture was graphic – there he was, his hands groping Danni’s ass in his office.

I grabbed the paper and went for a coffee to read it.

At the station I could see the TV screen – Danni was being interviewed – straight after her fashion shoot, so she looked even more gorgeous.

So, I thought, bitterly, it was out – the scandal Jane had hoped to avoid by dropping me. Then it hit me – what would have happened if I’d gone with Danni? She had to have arranged for the interview – she had not wanted me; she had wanted me to be there to do the dirty on Jane.

My phone rang – it was her.

“You’ve seen, I’m guessing?”

“I have.”

“Danni told him that you’d be there, you weren’t.”

“That’s not me,” I said, “though the bitch did try to seduce me with a view to luring me in. But I would not betray you.”

“I am sorry, Marianne.”

“What are you going to do?”

“Tell the truth – which is that the bitch did a couple of threesomes with us – that should cook her goose, playing the fucking victim.”

Yes, I thought, of course, they would have had a game plan.

“It will not do him any harm to be thought of as a stud. I am, of course, standing by my man.”

Of course, I thought, wearily.

“Take care, darling.”

And that was it.

As I walked along the river to the next Tube station, I reflected that I was well out of it. That treacherous Westminster jungle was no place for me. I realised that you were either predator or prey – I could not be the former, and I did not want to be the latter. That, I reflected, was the right way, to say goodbye – to all that.

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