He could barely see the water in front of his boat through the heavy, but swift moving fog. He knew he was somewhere between two reefs. Shutting off the engine, Jake pulled the lever to drop anchor.
At sixty feet, the chain stopped and Jake breathed a sigh of relief. He was in the channel with very little possibility of holing his little craft on an upthrust rock.
He sounded his deck horn to see if any nearby craft would respond. Only the brisk wind whipping the fog around responded, seeming to pick up as he faced into it.
He leaned against the side railing, hoping the wind would blow the fog away, but glad that the water was relatively calm. The boat moved gently in the long, slow swell of the waves beneath it, the hydraulics easily holding the deck level as the surrounding hull gently rocked back and forth. It was a warm evening well, sixty-seven degrees, a higher than normal temperature for a brisk, late August evening.
It was almost ten p.m. and if the sun had been visible, which it wasn't, it would be disappearing beneath the southwestern horizon any minute. With any luck, the fog would lift enough so that he could spot the lighthouse, or, it would thin out so that he could see a few overhead stars. Either circumstance would enable him to determine which way to steer toward the safety of the harbor and a soft bed. It was growing darker by the moment. He grinned at the thought of the fog 'visibly' becoming darker.
It was becoming invisible instead, and therefore more dangerous. Jake tightened his jacket zipper up against his throat and pulled the narrow fur collar up to protect his neck. He sounded the deck horn again, like he had been doing every few minutes whenever he thought of it.
He wasn't trying to be rescued he just didn't want to be run down by a fishing trawler coming into port using GPS while he was waiting for the fog to thin. 'I really oughta get that thing fixed,' he thought to himself, then sighed, knowing that, until he was ready to sell this little craft, he probably wouldn't get it fixed up.
It was after midnight when he got back to his hotel. There were several bags next to the check-in desk that Jake had to wade around. "Anything in the kitchen?" he asked the thin, tired-looking man behind the check-in.
"I'm sure you'll find something, Jake," the clerk replied. "Don't suppose you wanna help lug these bags upstairs… ta' elevator's out, agin." The odd little hotel was located on the western tip of Yunastka Island; the most western of several Aleutian Islands called the Islands of Four Mountains.
The hotel was old and weatherworn, having been built thirty years before, during a time when development of the Aleutians as a tourist attraction, like Hawaii, seemed a good investment. A small nuclear war, a giant tsunami and several volcanoes coming to life as a result of said war, a plague two years later and the resulting collapse of the U.S.
government ended any entrepreneurial interest anyone had in the Aleutian Islands. Over a period of several years, The Aleutians (and Alaska, itself), abandoned by the United States, became independent of any neighboring governments and currently lay unclaimed by any other nation, American or Asian.
There simply wasn't anything there that anyone thought they might want. Transportation was privately hired if anyone wanted to travel, as there were no regular flights coming or going anywhere from here. As business gradually recovered and took over the running of… well, business, most of the world was able to continue where it left off. The Aleutians, however, lay stretched across the Northern Pacific, mostly forgotten by everyone but a few fishing corporations.
That was why Jake was somewhat surprised to see travel bags shoved up against the check-in desk. In order to get here, someone would have had to hire a private jet or a boat to ferry him or her out to this vast chain of islands. "Who's our guest?" Jake asked, stepping around the expensive looking bags and toward the door marked 'Employees Only'.
"Some rich old fart come out here to pit himself against the raw elements of nature?" "Nope!" Caesar, the hotel clerk replied, suddenly more cheerful. "It'sa dame! Gorgeous, too! Young, blonde, makes a man hurt inside just t' look at 'er…" Jake grinned. "I know what you mean, old boy.
I've known a few like that." "Not like this, I'll bet," Caesar challenged. "She is heavy with money! Arrived here four hours ago in a air limo, no less! Sez to the driver, 'I'll call you, Charles, when I'm ready to leave." The last part was spoken in a high, falsetto voice to mimic the dame. "The limo driver's name was Charles?" Jake asked, not believing the tall tale his friend and fishing buddy was telling. "Well," Caesar replied, shrugging his shoulders, "I don't really know that, but he sure didn't wanna leave her here in this two-star diarrhea dive.
She practically threw him back into his limo and told him to 'scat'!" Jake laughed. "Does this rich, blonde diva have a name?" Caesar didn't have to look at the registration console; he'd spend the last four hours memorizing her name. "It's Burke like in Burke Industries; Mrs. Barry Burke. Her first name's Alicia.
I looked it up. Barry and Alicia Burke. She was probably his trophy wife! Fucking cradle-robber was sixty-eight when he croaked last week! When you see 'er, you'll know what killed him!" Caesar grinned victoriously at Jake. "Well, I'll not be stalking her tonight," Jake replied, turning away and heading into the kitchen.
"I'm too tired and hungry to woo some old geezer's rich trophy widow." Jake was browsing through the wide refrigerator shelves for something to nuke when Caesar came into the kitchen. "Jake, guess what?" he asked, grinning and pointing toward the ceiling. "Mrs. Burke wants to know if she can have some room service." He snickered, then wiped his mouth with his shirt collar.
Jake found some cold hot dogs and got them out. "What'd you tell 'er?" "I tol' 'er," Caesar snickered into his collar again. "I tol' 'er I'd check the kitchen and see if anything was available." Getting a can of bean soup off an overhead shelf, Jake fed it to the food processor.
When the red light came on, he added four hot dogs. "Well, ask her if she likes franks and beans." "I bet she was thinkin' more 'bout caviar and smoked salmon," Caesar replied. They both laughed. A few minutes later, a 'ding' signaled to Jake that his dinner was ready. At the same time, Caesar came back into the kitchen. "She's comin' down!" he gasped, not believing it himself. "She said, 'Franks 'n beans sounds wonderful,' and she's comin' right down! Oh my God! I was hoping I wouldn't have to see 'er again, today!" "But you said she's beautiful," Jake replied, grinning at his love-stricken friend.
"Oh, she is!" Caesar exclaimed. "It hurts me just to look at 'er! An' she's comin' down here expectin' t' be fed!" "Well, I'd better get another bowl down, then," Jake said, pretending to yawn with boredom just to irritate Caesar. "You're gonna feed her in the kitchen?" Caesar yelled, trying to make an impact in Jake's mind about what was happening. "Well, yeah," Jake said, frowning. "The dining room's closed. Has been for a week, now, since your last guest left." "Yeah, just me 'n you," Caesar replied, sighing heavily.
"I'm glad I didn't put any o' my money into this little venture." Jake laughed. "But you did, oh mighty Caesar, and so did I, fool that I was." "Well, I guess it's a good thing money's worthless now, eh?" Caesar asked, then staring at the entranceway into the kitchen, "Ooh, my…" His voice died away. Jake looked up. His mouth dropped open. "Uncle Jake?" Alicia cried out, raising her hand up to her mouth and pretending to be surprised to see him.
"My God! Is that really you?" "You KNOW her?" Caesar asked, recovering first. "Uh, yeah?" Jake replied intelligently, then continued to stare at the tall, blonde goddess rushing across the room with her arms held out to embrace him. Almost bending him back over the counter, Alicia warmly hugged Jake and kissed him passionately right on the mouth.
"I guess you do…" Caesar muttered, watching this rich, gorgeous woman throw herself all over good old homebody Jake. "Tha's a funny way to kiss an uncle…" Jake finally freed his face from Alicia's lip lock. "What in the world are you doing here?" "Just thought I'd look you up and drop by for a visit," Alicia replied smiling, then kissed him again, on the cheek this time. "It's been ages since we've seen each other!
What's wrong, Uncle Jake? Aren't you happy to see me?" Suspiciously holding the vivacious blonde at arm's length, Jake said, "I seem to recall the last time I saw you, you tied me to your bed and tortured me for three days, trying to get me to marry you!" Jake felt a hard set of knuckles rap the side of his head. "Ow! What the fuck did you do that for?" He looked at Caesar, who was glaring at him, still waving his knuckles in front of his face.
"Don't use that word in front of a lady! It ain't polite!" Caesar fumed. Before Jake could react, Caesar rapped him again up alongside his head. "You had a chance to marry her and you turned 'er down, you Jack Ass?" Caesar yelled right into Jake's face. "I just thought you were a damn fool to invest in this flea-bag hotel, but I'm sure of it now! Pardon me fer swearin', Ma'am." "Well, I seem to have a knight in shining armor," Alicia said, ignoring Jake's cool ardor and smiling at Caesar.
"I apologize for kissing the wrong man…" She draped her arms around a suddenly terrified Caesar and kissed him squarely on the mouth.
When she released him a moment later, he swayed sideways a bit, his mouth hanging open and his eyes glazed over. Jake reached out, fearful that Caesar might fall over. "Well," Jake admonished her, "you haven't changed a bit. A little older around the eyes, maybe." "I may have made a mistake in coming here," Alicia admitted. "But now that I'm here, I'm not leaving for awhile." "I heard about your husband," Jake replied.
"I'm sorry." "That's it?" Alicia asked, disappointed in his brevity. "I'm surprised you even knew I got married." "Caesar told me," Jake admitted, "about ten minutes ago." "Figures," Alicia smirked.
"The joke's always on me. I still love you, you know." Jake sighed, not wanting to be even crueler than he already was. He didn't believe she knew what love was. Alicia was a sex addict. It was probably the vampire blood in her veins, but she made up for the sexual aversion Tanya, her mother, used to have toward him. "You're not hiding anything from me, Jake," Alicia said, after a moment of silence. "I know you don't approve of me. But, I'll have you know that while I was married, I was completely faithful to my husband, and I bore him six children.
I've lived a complete lifetime denying you." "And now you're here," Jake said simply. "And now I'm here," Alicia replied. "I know you still love 'her', and I'm not trying to interfere or take that away from you.
I thought maybe we could… console each other." "You live because she did," Jake accused, almost snarling at her. "You're a part of the world she left behind. Why would you believe for a minute that I want to be reminded of her?" Alicia thought for a moment. "I've been flying over these islands for the last two hours before we landed here," she finally responded. "The desolate wildness of this place tells me a lot.
It's beautiful, but it's a lonely land. It's the last wilderness, isn't it? Someplace she's never been?" Jake pushed his way past her and through the kitchen doorway. She couldn't see the expression on his face. Embarrassed at witnessing that very private moment, Caesar blushed and blinked rapidly, his breathing shallow and nervous, as well.
"Um, Ma'am," Caesar stammered. "There's, um… There's soup." He gestured nervously at the counter behind where Jake had been standing. Two bowls of bean soup sat steaming, waiting for whoever would consume them. Tearing her eyes away from the swinging door, Alicia gazed at the frightened clerk, then at the counter where he was trying to direct her attention. She gazed at the counter for a moment, realizing that she'd interrupted Jake's… supper, breakfast, whatever meal it was for him.
She looked up at Caesar, smiling, trying to get him to relax. He was obviously terrified of beautiful girls. She had no idea why, but she had run into that problem all her life.
The only way she'd ever learned how to handle that problem was to simply ignore it and pretend that the other person wasn't acting completely freaked out.
"Well," Alicia said, making up her mind about eating, anyway, "it was nice of him to leave me… something to eat." She sighed. "Would you stay and eat with me? I don't like eating alone." "Uup, well… no, Ma'am," Caesar stuttered. "I, um… I've already had supper… but, um, well… I'll stay and just watch you…" He frowned quickly and clamped his mouth shut, then continued, "I'll, uh, keep you… company, if you want me… um, want me to…" Alicia smiled at him as sweetly as she could, then looked around, found a stool and sat down on it, soup bowl in hand.
Her robe slid open, revealing one very long and beautifully slender leg. Realizing she hadn't picked up a spoon, she started to get up. "Wait… wait," Caesar said quickly, almost yelling in his anxiety.
"I'll git it!" He grabbed a soupspoon and reached it toward her so quickly that he accidentally rapped her knuckles with it. Clack! "Damn!
I'm sorry!" Caesar yelped, as surprised by the impact as she was. "Here's your… um, your spoon." He sat back, staring at the gorgeous blonde who was still staring at him in surprise. Blinking nervously, Caesar looked away, blushing a deep shade of red.
The image of that bare leg was burned into his retina. He could even see it with his eyes closed. He took a deep breath, trying to keep from trembling in terror of making an idiot of himself, knowing it was already much too late.
Hearing her giggle quietly, he jerked his head back and glared at her. "It's alright," Alicia told him quietly, "I know it was an accident." He watched her for a moment while she started eating. When she was about half done, she looked up at him. "You can have the other bowl if you like," she offered.
"I won't be able to eat both of them." "Um, no," Caesar said, some of his nervousness gone. "That's Jake's. I'll heat it up and take it to him in a bit." Alicia knew that the shy hotel clerk didn't want to share soup with her.
He didn't want to share food with her, or talk with her, or anything 'with' her. He wanted her. She knew the type shy, lonely, never reaching for what they want. They either broke and became serial rapists that buried their unwilling victims deep in the woods, or they broke and crawled into a hole, unwilling to harm these beauteous creatures that unknowingly caused them so much personal anguish. Caesar chose to live in a hole. He lived here on this wild island so he wouldn't have to be around people like her.
People like her didn't come here. But here she was, and Caesar was trapped in the same room with her. She felt sorry for him, but realized that any move she made to ease his mind would be interpreted (correctly) as pity, and she would be vehemently rejected.
She had played this game before. Only men with a measure of self-confidence were comfortable around her. Her beauty didn't allow men like Caesar to trust her.
"Would it be all right if I took it up to him?" she asked. "It's very good, and I'd like to thank him for preparing it for me." Caesar didn't answer for a minute, realizing that he had somehow blown any chance of being with this incredibly stunning creature. She was going to try for Jake again, although he had already rejected her (The fool!). He relaxed, knowing that he was out of the game, now. It was more comfortable this way; not competing for her.
He realized that she was more comfortable with that, too. Smiling in relief, Caesar told her, "His room number is 410 the big one at the end of the hall. You can see the ocean and the Amukta Volcano from his window. If the fog has cleared, you should be able to see it, 'specially at night. The volcano is still erupting." "Thank you," Alicia said, sincerely. She didn't add, 'You're very nice,' knowing how that would be interpreted.
Putting down her half-eaten bowl, she picked up the other one and left. "Good night, and… um, thank you again." "Yeah," Caesar replied. He got up and stood for a moment, then picked up the bowl she'd left behind. He reverently lifted the spoon to his lips and tasted. Her lips had been where his lips were, now. The spoon was cold and empty. There was no life in it.
Somehow disappointed and not quite understanding why, he shoved the spoon and the bowl into the sink and turned on the water to rinse them clean. Jake stood in the darkness of his room and stared out the window. Beyond the dock lights was the deep blackness of the Pacific except for an orange-red spot on the horizon.
If he were closer, he would be able to tell it was molten lava that made that glow. He'd spent most of the last week tramping around on the parts of that lava field that had cooled, simply exploring during the day and sleeping in his boat at night.
The days were long, this time of year, and he'd covered great distances. But he never actually got close to the volcanic crater itself. He was unwilling to spent a night on the lava fields, and the crater was more than a day's walk inland.
He knew what hell looked like, now. It was an entire island covered in lava with a giant crater in its center that spewed out smelly gasses and molten rivers of black rock.
A soft knock on the door interrupted him. "Yeah?" "Room service," a soft, feminine voice replied. "Your supper…" Jake walked quickly to the door and pulled it open.
Alicia was standing there holding his soup bowl with both hands as though she was offering it to him. He lifted it out of her hands, unable to do it without touching her soft skin. Even in that fraction of a second of physical contact, he felt her her mind inside his, his mind inside hers, then it was gone as he lifted the bowl out of her hands. He stared at her for a moment, realizing that he'd felt a new depth to her that wasn't there forty years before.
She waited patiently, knowing full well her violation of his privacy. "Come in," Jake said, finally breaking the awkward silence between them. Alicia walked into the darkness of the room and let him close the door behind her.
She heard him set the soup bowl down, then his hands were on her shoulders as he stood behind her. In physical contact again, she could feel his mind questing on the edge of her consciousness. He didn't want her; he needed her. And he hadn't known it until she was standing there, offering herself to him. She turned halfway around to meet him, wanting to please him, happy for the fact that he needed her.
Jake's mouth met hers and crushed her lips against her teeth, giving her no chance to respond to his kiss, if that was what that cruel crush against her mouth was. His hands weren't gentle, either, reaching around and grabbing her breasts more firmly than she liked, right through her nightgown. Alicia didn't cry out or protest. She knew that if she ever sought out Jake he would probably rape her, as he seemed bent on doing, now. She was willing for him to treat her like that. It would make him more tractable, later, when his guilt kicked in.
As he pressed her against the wall, Alicia gazed out the window across the room. Far off in the distance was a tiny speck of red. 'That must be the volcano,' she thought to herself, 'fiery red and full of pain…' like she would be if she could feel any pain. But since her husband died, all she felt was… numb. That was why she'd sought out Jake; she didn't like feeling numb.
Jake had her dressing gown pulled up around her waist by now and was feeling between her legs, forcing his fingers into her, making her wetter with her need for him.
Any pain she felt was cast out through that window across the room, across the sea and into that tiny fiery glow, far away. She closed her eyes, limiting her awareness to physical sensation as her body responded to Jake's rough handling.
Jake was shoving his cock up inside her, now. She heard a feminine sigh as he rammed all the way in and realized the sound had come from her throat. She sighed again, just to make sure it had actually been her making that erotic, lonely sound. This was the first time in months that anyone had touched her sexually, and she badly needed what Jake was doing to her, despite his roughness. Noticing that she was simply leaning against the wall with her arms dangling and limp, she raised her arms and put them over Jake's shoulders.
That seemed to flood his mind with anger, but right now she couldn't figure out why. Alicia was an Empath, and, in her opinion, a very good one.
She had been the brains behind her late husband's increase in wealth with her ability to 'read' the other players in their high-finance world. After having not taken her advice twice, the Honorable Barry Burke created the position of Vice President in Charge of Planning and offered it to his wife.
In the ensuing thirty years, she 10x'ed his fortune. At his death, he was about the fiftieth wealthiest man in the world. And it all belonged to Alicia Burke. The first thing she did was proxy everything out (she'd had years to set that up) to her children, giving most of her power to her oldest daughter, Jacqueline, her staunchest ally in her planned matriarchy.
Then she started looking for Uncle Jake not her real uncle, of course, but he and her parents were blood sisters and brother to that mythical vampiress who had given them immortality. She had a very special purpose for seeking out Jake after all this time, and, right now, he was making it very easy for her to succeed in that purpose.
As she became more aroused, it became easier to reach into Jake's mind and sooth his anger and his pain. She'd had a lifetime of practice (almost forty years) controlling her late husband's thoughts and desires Uncle Jake wouldn't be that much different, would he?
The last time they'd been together, she hadn't even known she could do stuff like that and had tried physical coercion, locking him in her room and fucking him blind for however many days it took until her body monitor informed her of a change in her physical status. That first time, it took three days for her to get pregnant.
Her first child, already thirty-eight years old, should live as long as Alicia, herself. Sometime during that last few minutes after Alicia embraced him and wiped out any illusion that he was raping her, Jake's rage smoothed out into a seething heat a need to devour this blond creature who reminded him of everything he'd lost or left dozens of years behind him.
She grunted with each savage thrust into her body, passively accepting his cruel invasion of her most sensitive parts. She was even starting to thrust back. Her acceptance of what he was doing wasn't what he had planned when he'd pulled her into the room. Jake had hoped that his cruelty and coldhearted meanness would drive Alicia away. Instead she acted like she accepted his raping her. It occurred to him that she had come to his door, expecting, or perhaps even hoping, to be raped.
His estimation of her courage went up considerably in that moment of realization, and he started thinking about how to give her more pleasure. Alicia could feel the change in his emotions and knew she'd won, again. He would let her stay with him for awhile. Perhaps he would marry her, this time. If not, she had another husband picked out, primed and ready in Baltimore. In the meantime, Jake was hugging her sweating, thrusting body against his, driving steadily toward orgasm and an explosive eruption of sensation inside her.
She rode him, now, every nerve in her body alive and ready to explode her hard, sensitive nipples rubbing against his heaving chest. With one leg already being held up, Alicia wrapped her arms around Jake's neck, pulled her other leg up, and wrapped it around his waist. Another instant of rage flooded through her and she realized that she must have imitated a position that reminded Jake of Béla.
Dropping her free leg back down for support, she arched away from him and let him pound harder into her pussy, their stomachs not touching while their pelvises slammed against each other letting him dissipate his newfound rage back down into the sensuality that she could use to control his needs and desires. Another moment of that intense pounding and she was ready to come.
She squeezed hard against his cock with his next thrust, increasing the intensity of the sensation he was receiving from her hot, wet insides. His body responded to her new tightness and she felt his orgasm approaching with a sigh of relief. She hadn't wanted to continue that merciless pounding after having an orgasm. If they came at the same time, they could both stop, after. Jake's cock started to jerk as he ripped in and out of her, and suddenly, he rammed in hard and stayed there, pumping jets of semen deep into her cunt.
Alicia gurgled in response as he nearly crushed her body in his arms and against the wall, her pussy quivering and pulsing with her own orgasm. They both relaxed at the same instant and Jake nearly dropped her to the floor as she began to slide down the wall, her legs unable to hold her up any longer. Instead, he managed to land her, in a controlled slide down the wall, with her legs twisted and bent beneath her sweating, weary body. Gasping for breath, he gazed down at her in the darkness of the room.
He could make out her shimmering blond hair. Her eyes were almost invisible pinpricks of reflected light from the docks and he realized that she had been staring listlessly out the window the entire time he'd been fucking her. At that moment, he realized that she'd found a place to put her pain and emotional distress.
She'd cast it into the volcano, the same as he had with his own pain over the years he'd spent here. He helped her up and practically carried her to his bed, then gently dropped her down.
For the time being, he recognized that she belonged to him some sort of rite of passage that had occurred in the last fifteen minutes. He hadn't planned it, and he certainly didn't want her, but for now, at least, she was his. Alicia was grateful that Jake didn't try to talk to put his feelings into words. He'd carried her to his bed. That was enough for now. And her body was finally sated after months of frustration and the pain of watching her husband fade and age into a hollow husk from his cancer and the brutal 'treatment' that weakened him as much as the disease.
Jake left Alicia on the bed and went into the bathroom to wash the sweat and sex off of him. When he returned to the bed, Alicia was asleep or, more likely, unconscious, having been brutalized enough that Jake felt rotten regarding his treatment of her. He got a washcloth and wiped her down as best he could, then crawled in next to her on the bed.
He lay there, gazing at her in the darkness, wondering what had driven her to seek him out, then suddenly remembered that she'd brought him a bowl of soup. That was the last thing he thought of before he fell asleep.