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Making ends meet 4


Nov 5, 2013
A place in Wales that you can't pronounce
As the last shudders of his orgasm subsided, I put my arms round his neck and held him close.

'Thank you,' I whispered.

He lifted his head and looked at me in surprise.

'You're the first who's ever said that,' his tone was one of surprise.

'First what?' I asked.

Good question.

First what?

There were lots of words to chose from.

Prostitute, whore, tart, slut, slag, escort, agency worker. To name just a few.

Or he could try: housewife desperate to pay her bills in the cost of living crisis.

It was his call. I waited.
I waited for his answer. Would it be one of those I had in mind or something worse? Whatever it was, I was sure I would deserve it.

But when it came, it was a complete surprise.

'Women,' he said. 'No woman has ever thanked me after sex.'

'Really?' I was shocked. He hadn't been that bad, in fact he hadn't been bad at all. he had a decent technique, on top of which he had been polite and respectful. 'Not even your wife or girlfriend?'

He shook his head.

Which made me wonder, had I ever thanked my husband. To my embarrassment, I had to admit that I had not. I had taken it for granted. A failure I would remedy at the first opportunity.

On my way home, the agency sent me a text to say he had added a tip to my fee. A generous one too.

After that, I made a point of always saying 'Thank you' to my clients.

But you're wondering how all this started, so I need to go back a bit to tell you the story.
Everyone at work was feeling the pinch on our finances as our bills soared. Our regular Friday drinks after work had become our end of the month drinks. Evenings out with our families had reduced to a takeaway and a film night in. The fashionistas among us were obviously mixing and matching rather than buying the latest fashion.

In short, it was all pretty miserable and, therefore, no surprise when someone (probably Sally, it was usually Sally) said 'Sod it, let's cheer ourselves up and go out for a drink after work.'

So we did. And to make it special we agreed to congregate in the bar of the posh hotel in the centre of town. I was last to arrive apart possibly for Deidre – she was so low key that it was easy to overlook her arrival, her departure and, for that matter, her presence. The gang were crowded around the table in the corner, some on the curved bench and others on chairs purloined from nearby tables.

'Come and sit next to me,' Phyllis called, shoving her hip into her neighbour Carol to make some space.

As I was squeezing in, a woman walked away from the bar and settled at a table, sitting sideways on to the entrance. Blue two piece that looked like business attire, except that she had one too many buttons open on the jacket and the skirt was slit so high you could see the flesh above her stockings.

She had almost finished her drink when a man came in, middle-aged, nothing special, looking slightly rumbled, like he's just arrived after a long flight. He looked around and walked straight over to her. They exchanged words, she gulped down the rest of her drink and rose to leave with him.

It was only when she walked past our table that I recognised her. Wendy. She lived close by, a stay at home mom who was always running her kids around - to and from school, or after-school clubs, or weekend sports. I was used to seeing her in jeans and t-shirts.

They passed by without a glance in my direction. Or so I thought.

The next Saturday I was having a coffee in a café in town when she walked in, spotted me, came over and sat down.

'You saw me, didn't you.' It was a statement, not a question.

I nodded and waited.

It did not take her long to begin a long explanation.
I listened to a long explanation of much her husband earned but their expenditure, which she was supposed to control, kept growing. Entertainment his clients was mentioned. Clothes to create the right appearance with clients. School fees for their children. Holidays. Cleaning and maintaining the house.

'I was at my wits end,' she concluded.

'So what did you do?' As if I didn't know.

'I was just googling ideas for making extra money and hit on an article about a woman who, well you know. Apparently, there was a market, not for professionals, but for amateurs like me, housewives. That's what lots of guys want. Just an ordinary woman, like their partners. There are agencies that cater for them, guys in town for a conference or a meeting or something, guys you won't bump into the mall with their kids, and who wouldn't bump into me with mine.'

'Isn't there still a risk that someone would recognise you, like I did?'

'Very small. I dress differently, behave differently, and don't try to conceal what I am doing. I actually came face to face with a friend and she looked right through me.'

There was only one place this conversation was going, so I decided it was time to jump there and spare either of us any further embarrassment.

'I didn't tell one,' I said simply, 'and I'm not going to. This is your business.'

The deep sigh told me I had hit on the real reason for this confession.

And so we parted. She went to collect her kids and I went to do some research online.
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