General Fiction posted November 13, 2014 Chapters:  ...35 36 -37- 

This work has reached the exceptional level
Lucille writes the final passages in her journal

A chapter in the book FRIDAYS

Saturday December 2nd

by Fridayauthor

It has taken many Friday evenings for Lucille to discover herself.
            Saturday December 2nd
            I have spent the entire night, here on my sofa, wrapped in my flannel bathrobe, snuggled among my pillows, until I can now see the first pink streaks of morning peek across the bay amid the early sounds of the birds' awakening. I have smiled, cried, wondered, felt warm and content, cold and lonely, lost and at long last found. Most of all, I've felt an overwhelming need to talk to you, Mr. Anderson. Instead, I speak only with pen and ink to this near-completed tome whose final pages I've filled in the darkened hours since you left this room.
            Father Hammond was right. This journal has unwittingly provided me much insight and I shall not fail to so inform my priest. But when I place a final dot at the end of the last sentence of my writings, what shall become of my effort? No, Father Hammond, I shan't share it with you, much as you may be qualified to deal with a confessor of secrets. Shall I put a match to my journal of confidences? Or might I perhaps share them with another, not for sympathy or pity, not for understanding, just as an offer to glimpse at the true Lucille Peabody, unadorned, to take or discard as the reader pleases? I’ve labored over this question throughout the stillness of the night.
            Mr. Anderson, I so wish to tell you how very much I appreciated your kindness last evening. The words you didn't say were far more soothing than those you might have spoken. Any normal human being could stand up and tell you these things, meeting your eyes with a smile, but not Lucille Peabody. She is relegated to posting her thoughts and emotions in this book, for no other eyes to see. But now, after a night of soul-searching, I've decided to share these words, though the thought of another reading my  intimate revelations causes me to shiver in spite of the flannel that robes me. The fear doubles when I think you may be chased away by the shear mass of my complexities.
            Yes, Mr. Anderson . . . Philip; may I call you that at long last? I'm writing this to you. There is so much I wish to confide to you; I've decided to do so with pen as it is far more representative of my thoughts than tongue-tied Lucille speaking to you in person. It is so very important to me that you know all that came before last evening, so you will hopefully understand how much the intimacy meant to me. If I did not put last night to words and paper, in exacting detail, perhaps some minute feeling or memory would slip away with time, be forgotten and lost forever. I surely would be saddened beyond measure if that ever came to pass.
            Even these words so poorly scratched fail to suffice in conveying my feelings for you, so confused and alien are my thoughts and, yes, my passions. I also want you to meet my friends and know them as well as I; not just Black Cat whose infuriating independence far exceeds either yours or mine or Sarah's whose company we have shared and learned to love, but also Amy, that half-self of mine who lies hidden in the far recesses of my mind.
            Last night we shared something precious to me, and I'd like to think to you as well. You cannot know how difficult it was for me to offer this part of myself, this major portion, but even that was not all of me. There is more to Lucille Peabody as you can now see when you read these pages. Perhaps I've always been writing these words for you. Must I bare all these transgressions of my life in such stark and embarrassing detail, leaving nothing of my privacy untouched? I feel I must, as each happening so affected the others as to greatly alter this woman who has kept your company these Friday evenings, yet so long kept herself from you. Who is she, what does she feel, what are her thoughts, why does she act as she does, is she in love?
             I truly ask your pardon if the intimacy of these pages is embarrassing; if it is too personal in its detail of thoughts and descriptions. To me, intimacy is far more than sharing one's body in an exchange of physical pleasure; it is offering the intimacies of one's mind and beliefs and feelings. I've told you secrets in these pages few would share, perhaps offering my soul to you in addition to my body. But as you can see, my need is great. I want desperately for someone else to meet Amy and understand both Amy and Lucille a little better, as we are just now beginning to know ourselves.
            When we began our Friday evenings together, I never thought nor wanted them to culminate this way, as we lay together last evening, or you having to listen to my secrets through these pages. I hoped we'd share each other's company for a few weeks and I'd return to my solitary comfort of untroubled aloneness, content with Amy and my thoughts, with no fear of dragons at my door. Instead I've discovered a world I scarcely knew existed that frightens me beyond measure. It's a world where people share and give themselves willingly to love, knowing full well the hurt that might follow such an intimate and personal sacrifice. And yet it's a world so glorious I cannot ignore it any longer nor deny even the slimmest opportunity to squeeze through the door to its glorious daylight.
            I must thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for so closely abiding by our initial covenant. We kept to the rules. We did nothing each of us did not agree to allow to happen; even if it was a Lucille Peabody I didn't know who finally gave herself in body and in love to you last Friday evening. If she hadn't known in her deepest heart that the choice remained hers throughout, to retreat if she so desired, or proceed if she dared, she'd have fled the room in fear and dread at your very first touch.
            Amy claims I subconsciously planned the entire affair. She gleefully says I lulled you into a sense of security with my standoffishness, gradually wooed you with my charm, lured you with provocative clothes and erotic scents into my lair like a spider to her web, plied you with liquor and then took you for my own amid soft cushions and silken pillows. Untrue! Untrue! Untrue! Even she does not understand fully what it took to let last evening finally happen.
            It was Sarah who taught me that security and comfort absent love is a false comfort at best. You must give until you tremble no matter if it hurts. The world demands you take a chance if you are to live. I shall pass on to anyone who displays an iota of interest, Sarah's legacy as helpful as this girl of another time has been to me. I wish her well in her other life and perhaps, God willing, I'll one day meet her on the other side.
            Perhaps I'm old fashioned although after Friday night you may find that a hard lump of mashed potatoes to swallow! Giving one's body is just a symbol; giving oneself is the true measure of giving. To say," here I am I trust you with all I hold dear and treasure", causes a chill to my body I can't describe.
            No, I regret nothing that occurred last evening. We were most imprudent in our unprotected relations and the hens would have an inexhaustible supply of gossip should shy Miss Peabody be with child! But even if that miracle should have occurred, I would still dance beneath the stars with happiness at my good fortune in simply knowing you regardless of the consequences. To have a child with so kind and caring a man would be the blessing of a lifetime.
            I must have a heart to heart conversation with my God on Sunday next.  Surely He must be peeved at my recent carrying-on. I feel an overwhelming need to explain to Him my actions of Friday night. What I did with you seems to fly in the face of all that His worldly employees have established as appropriate behavior for a good girl. The subject of lovemaking has not come up in conversation between my God and me until now; living a chaste existence causes no questions of moral lassitude. If I offended Him, I'm truly sorry as He's been most generous to me of late, finding you, my dear and sweet Mr. Anderson . . . Philip. I'm hopeful He'll forgive me my transgression when He understands the wealth of insight I have gleaned from my actions, knowledge about myself, and the special blessed art of giving and not holding back to fear.
            It's strange, isn't it? It was really my bashfulness that brought our bodies together, my long-despised unwillingness to face an issue and deal with it. If I had not been so hesitant to say what was on my mind, I would have surely stopped you, long before you touched my body, and my mind, and my soul. We never would have made love together if I had been as bold, as I at one time wished Lucille Peabody to be. Again, like a few weeks past, I would have pushed you away, perhaps this time for good.
            In retrospect, I don't see how I could have accomplished the task of reaching the point where I am sitting writing this message to you, if we had not last night held each other as we did. If we are to further our relationship, and I dearly hope and pray we will, I never could have proceeded not knowing if I could do no more for you than hold your hand, and kiss your lips lightly at my door after a Friday evening. Think how grossly unfair it would have been to both of us if I had proceeded with our relationship with this unanswered question looming between us? We could have marched forward; you might have even asked me to marry you, thinking you knew me. We might have become man and wife, with me lying in your bed in fear as you wondered why I did not respond to your affections. Like my mother, I might have steeled myself to be a complacent repository for your seed and passion, but from fear, not giving to you any of myself in return. And if you didn't truly know me I'd be forced to live in constant fear of your learning the true me and sending me out with the trash. You're a kind and sweet man and perhaps you think similarly of me and with most couples that would be enough to create a life together. I dare say it would be far more than what many couples enjoy who claim compatibility as fitting well beneath the sheets or not screaming obscenities at one another on a daily basis. But that could never be enough for me.
            Anyone who takes love and gives it in return has a right to know the product, to read the label of what they are purchasing, knowing the soul they are about to share. “Artificial sweeteners added?” I offer on these pages Lucille Peabody, unadulterated, for your inspection.
            I am going to visit my parent's graves again today, and try and bury them once and for all. I'll ask their forgiveness for my unkind thoughts of them, but say goodbye to both as well as the past they created for me. I'm tired of yesterday now that I so enjoy today and may, God willing, have many tomorrows. Hopefully they have found peace from the demons that stalked their lives. But they had their life and it's time they gave me back mine.
            As difficult as it is for both of us, we must learn to communicate with one another and not hide behind the perception each of us has of the other. Philip Anderson is a real person, not just the Philip Anderson Lucille Peabody has invented, like another Amy, in her mind. And Lucille Peabody has an obligation to learn much more about this man for whom she cares so deeply. No, I ask not for a confession of past sins or a journal as intimate as what I hold in my hand, but a simple understanding of all you want me to know to be able to love the true you that dwells within. What I'm saying to you in these pages isn't a confession, for that speaks of guilt and I've come to learn I have less of that than I've always believed. I'm just introducing you to the true me I hope in my heart you will love as I love you. There, my dear Philip, I've finally said it. I love you.
            I pray to my God and Amy, that I'll have the courage to put a purple ribbon around the rest of me in this lengthy message and with trembling hands present it to you, next Friday evening. Pray God, you'll read it and understand the real me I'm just now beginning to know. And if you still wish to walk hand in hand with me toward tomorrow, I promise I'll be here waiting, nestled in my sofa among my pillows, gazing at the harbor, and thinking of you.
                             The End

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Many thanks for all at FanStory who have followed Lucille for the last 62,000 words and trials to this final chapter. Your interest, kind words and reviews have been most helpful.
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