An Exercise in Fertility

tagIncest/TabooAn Exercise in Fertility

ALL CHARACTERS ENGAGED IN SEXUAL ACTIVITY ARE OVER THE AGE OF 18.
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It was a mid-semester Friday afternoon. I had just finished my last class of the week and normally I would've been in the mood to celebrate. Instead…not so much. I'd just broken up with my girlfriend, I didn't have the energy to go hit a party, and both of my sub-optimal roommates would be around all weekend so I didn't feel like going back to the dorm. With a heavy sigh, I shouldered my backpack and started the long trek to the library. At least I could get an early start on studying for my rapidly approaching mid-terms.
Just then, perfect timing, my phone buzzed with an incoming text.
Jenny: 'Hi Jakey it's your gorgeous cousin!'
I chuckled. Did Jenny, my absolute favorite relative, really think she had to identify herself? Like I wouldn't have her in my address book. I decided to give her some shit.
Me: 'Which one?'
Jenny: 'Oh ha ha funny boy'
Me: 'Lol. What's up Jenny?'
Jenny: 'Just lying around…slept in'
Well, that wasn't a great sign. She was still in bed at 4:00 in the afternoon? I felt a pang of guilt, knowing I should've been checking up on her lately. I knew she got laid off a few weeks ago, and she wasn't taking it very well. But I'd been preoccupied with my own problems and hadn't reached out to her in a while.
Me: 'Well get up lazybones. Dalia will be home soon. You guys got plans this weekend?'
Jenny: 'She's working late tonight, then taking the redeye home to see the family, I'm taking a me day, not even dressed yet.'
Well, this was starting to worry me a bit. I considered grilling her more about her state of mind, but with Jenny it usually worked better to approach things with humor.
Me: 'Not dressed yet? So you're naked'
There was a pause, and for a moment I wondered if I'd misread her mood. Maybe she needed serious conversation, not flirtatious joking.
Jenny: 'Pervert, lol. No not naked'
Jenny: 'Not quite heh heh'
That caught me off balance. I was relieved because her tone sounded upbeat, but surprised because she usually wasn't so flirtatious. Normally, I flirted and she laughed it off. That was kind of our thing.
Me: 'Hmmm….panties and bra?'
Jenny: 'Will you stop!!! lol…yeah panties anyway'
Oh my god. I felt a throb as my cock woke up and decided to listen in. Jenny is one of the most gorgeous women I know, and my mind flashed a fantasy of sexy, slender Jenny in skimpy panties with her hands barely covering her full breasts.
Me: 'Just panties????'
Jenny: 'STOP lol pervert. No I'm wearing a little top sort of…what I sleep in wink'
Me: 'Send pics"
Ouch. As soon as I sent it, it felt wrong. I was still worried I might be misreading her mood. Maybe she was hurting and the flirtatiousness was forced. In any event, I was crossing the line. I dreaded her response.
Jenny: 'If you want to see it you have to come over'
I paused. Was she kidding? What the hell! I stepped into a doorway in a classroom building, made sure no one was looking, and adjusted my increasingly awkward hardon.
Jenny: 'Kidding!!!! lol well not about coming over'
Me: 'You sure? I'd love to see you it's been awhile'
Jenny: 'Yeah… to be honest I have an ulterior motive…your mom told me you and Alice aren't doing well…I thought you might want to talk.'
You guessed it; Alice was my brand-new ex-girlfriend.
Me: 'Yeah…not sure where it's going…we're taking a break'
Jenny: 'Oh shit. I'm sorry…you ok?'
Me: 'I'm ok…a little down but I'll live'
Jenny: 'Aww baby boy…you better come over'
Me: 'Yeah that'd be nice…give me like an hour and a half?'
Jenny: 'make it 2 hours, pick us up some dinner'
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Jenny was four years older than me. She was one of the oldest of a pack of eight cousins in our branch of the extended family who were crammed into a four-year age band. I was the youngest of the group. I had vague memories of seeing Jenny a couple of times when she was just a little girl and I was still a toddler.
My first solid, distinct memory of her was from a family re-union when I was ten years old and all the cousins were there. As the youngest by at least two years, I was excluded or picked on the entire time. The worst offender was my own brother, Howie, who was the oldest of the group and the unquestioned ringleader. Well, unquestioned except by Jenny, who took pity on me and made an effort to include me and be nice. She even got into an argument about it with Howie at one point, and she was ferocious. She succeeded in getting him to treat me slightly better, and she was Wonder Woman in my eyes.
Flash forward to the next family re-union, featuring little Jake at thirteen. At that point, I was older and wiser and probably a little more able to stick up for myself and hang with the big kids, except…
Except gorgeous Cousin Jenny showed up with her brand-new woman's body. Jenny at seventeen was already a goddess. I was just starting to notice girls and holy shit did I notice her. I was a stammering, blushing wreck. Howie and all the others couldn't help but notice my noticing, and they were merciless. I was mocked, teased, and tormented like never in my life.
I spent that entire weekend hiding and wishing I was dead. I was desperately in love, I was humiliated, I felt like the whole world was laughing at me. Life couldn't possibly be worse. Until Jenny, clearly understanding the problem, tracked me down and talked to me and said all the right things and even though it was horrible and painful, she somehow got me through the weekend.
Flash forward four years. Jake at seventeen was a rangy but muscled 6'2" with a trophy on my shelf that said WATER POLO STATE CHAMPIONS. Heading into the family re-union, I wasn't worried about being picked on anymore.
But I was worried about Jenny. The college junior had recently "come out" as a lesbian. Her unhappy parents, instead of keeping it in house, had blabbed to some other relatives, and they told others, and now the whole extended family knew. So now it looked like Jenny's saga would be the major scandal at the reunion.
My parents, who were slightly more open-minded and enlightened than Jenny's, or most of our relatives for that matter, took me aside a couple of days before the re-union. After my dad stumbled through a horribly awkward attempt to explain lesbianism to me, and after hearing my assurance that I knew what it was, got to the point.
"Just be nice," he said. "Don't give her any shit about it. If you don't have anything nice to say to her, just keep your trap shut."
"You don't need to worry about me," I said. "You might want to talk to Howie." Dad rolled his eyes. By this time, wise-ass Howie was a fraternity king at a big university in the southeast and could be counted on to be a first-class dick in most situations.
"If your brother says anything out of line," my dad said, "you let me know."
Jenny had difficult travel connections and was one of the last to arrive in the evening of the first day of the re-union. Grandma, an old school bigot, made a point of ignoring her. Aunts and uncles, for the most part, were polite but chilly. Cousins shunned her and snickered behind her back. She was putting up a brave front, but sometimes I could see the pain in her eyes.
My heart ached for her. I wanted to be the one to go to her and hug her and tell her the family still loved her, even if they were being psychotically weird about it. I wanted to but couldn't. Last time I'd seen her was four years earlier during the Crush Phase and looking at her now dragged me back to that time. I found that I was still afraid to approach her. Or maybe I was just afraid of being ridiculed again by Howie and the gang.
On the morning of the second day, a bunch of us cousins were sitting in Grandma's basement, shooting the shit. I was enjoying not being the little tag along anymore. By now I was the tallest, even an inch two beyond Howie. I was the extended family's most accomplished athlete, and I had developed some swagger and confidence. Except for Howie, the older cousins treated me with deference now.
Suddenly, Jenny showed up. I remember how beautiful she looked in cute jean shorts and a pink tank top, her legs long and gorgeous.
Beautiful yes; in my eyes, probably the most beautiful girl in the world. But also sad and anxious and in pain. Surely my cousins would see that and open their arms and hearts to her.
"Hey guys," she said with forced cheerfulness. I admired her courage. There were a couple of grunts in response, and then everyone just clammed up, waiting as always to follow Howie's lead. I was on my feet, leaning against a wall, while Howie and most of the rest sat in chairs. I was surprised when none of the male cousins got up and offered Jenny a seat. I would have, if I'd been seated. That was just how we were raised. Jenny pretended not to notice the disrespect and sat awkwardly on the carpeted floor.
A few heartbeats of uncomfortable silence, then…
"Don't munch THAT rug," said Howie to Jenny.
Everyone burst out laughing. Everyone except Jenny and me. Jenny looked shocked and terribly hurt, and then I could see tears forming. She got to her feet and headed out the door. This was too much for me.
"Jenny, wait!" I said and started after her.
"Let her go, Romeo," said Howie, and the room exploded in a new round of laughter. Which faded when rage seized me, and I stomped over to Howie. He rose to face me.
"The fuck you wa–" he began, and then SLAP.
It was the hardest I've ever slapped anyone, and probably the hardest I've ever seen anyone slapped. It knocked him back into his seat and it seemed to echo in the small basement room forever. A hot pain surged through my left hand, which I would still feel the next day. It must have really stung for him. I took two steps back, giving him a chance to decide his next move. He picked the wrong one, and exploded up out of his chair, fist cocked, fury in his face.
Unfortunately, Cousin Trish made the wrong decision as well. Even though I was backing up, she leaped into me, hands on my chest like I was the one that needed to be held back. She was yammering at me to calm down and get a grip and whatever. Howie was coming at us fast, still rising out of a crouch and winding up to throw a wild right-handed punch that seemed more likely to hit Trish in the back of the head than me in the face.
In any event, I wasn't too keen on him hitting either of us. I brushed Trish aside and caught Howie square in the jaw with a hard right jab. It would have been harder if I hadn't been a little off balance, but combined with his forward momentum, it carried enough force to drop him like a sack of potatoes. It didn't knock him out, but he was lying on his side, propped up on an elbow, blinking and shaking his head and looking at me stunned and cross-eyed.
I glanced around to see if anyone else wanted to step in. The only other serious threats were the twins, Robbie and Richie, who were up out of their seats but wisely hadn't made a move toward me. When I was ten, they had terrified me, but I was half a head taller than they were now. They sat back down. I stood over my brother.
"If you want to be a douchebag and ignore her, that's your problem," I told him. "But you make another comment like that, and I will seriously fuck you up. YOU HEAR ME?"
"Yeah," he mumbled. I spun away and headed for the door, and then stopped in my tracks. Jenny was there, eyes wide, mouth in a beautiful O. I couldn't tell what she was thinking, but I was terrified she'd be angry and walk away. Instead, she managed a smirk.
"Come on, slugger," she said. "Let's take a walk."
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"Did you ever get in trouble for that?" Jenny asked.
"Nope," I said. "Howie is a dick but not a rat. He never told mom and dad."
"I'm surprised the twins or Trish didn't squeal. But I guess I shouldn't be. They were all terrified of you after that."
"Really?"
"Yeah. Trish told me later. Richie especially was shitting his pants. He picked on you so much when you were little, he thought you were going to come after him to get your revenge."
"I thought about it," I said, and we both laughed.
Jenny was setting the table while I took cartons of Chinese food out of the bags I'd brought with me. She was wearing a fluffy pink robe, which I could admit to myself was a disappointment after her earlier texts about lying around in lingerie. Probably she'd been kidding all along, and I had no business expecting a naughty fashion show from my cousin. But her flirty texting tone had raised my hopes.
In any event, I noticed she was setting the table for three. Apparently, she was expecting Dalia soon, and Jenny wouldn't have wanted her live-in lover to walk in on her displaying her charms, even if only to her cousin.
I looked up from the food and noticed Jenny was staring at me with a little smile on her face.
"What?" I shrugged.
"Nothing, just…remembering," she said. "How it felt…" Her eyes started to tear up, and she came to me and she was in my arms and she felt warm and wonderful and soft and curvy, and that crush that never really went away came roaring back to life.
"That's the only time anyone ever actually fought for me," she said, and we just held each other like that for a long time.
"Aww, look at you two! So freaking cute!" said Dalia as she burst through the front door and charged into the room. Almost as tall as me in her work heels, charismatic and aggressive and gorgeous. Her short hair and powerful body leaned slightly toward butch stereotype, but she was glammed out in a chic suit, and even after a long day her makeup was perfect.
With a guilty start, I tried to pull away but Jenny giggled and hung onto me.
"Just catching up with my baby cousin," she said.
"Baby cousin my ass," said Dalia, "more like baby giraffe. Did you grow another inch, Jake? Oh thank god, you guys got dinner."
"I know you have to rush," Jenny said. "You go get changed while we plate everything."
"Okay babe." Dalia gave us each a peck on the cheek as she rushed by into the bedroom.
"How was work?" asked Jenny from the kitchen.
"The usual," said Dalia. "Oh shit, Lyft's going to be here in 10, I'm really just going to have to eat and run. Sorry guys!"
She'd left the bedroom door open partway, probably so the conversation could continue while Jenny prepared the food. It also gave me the chance to ogle her as her suit fell away and she stood tall and stunning in a black bra and thong set. She glanced over her shoulder and caught me staring, but just gave me a grin and wink. I blushed and turned away.
Dalia was in a rush, and I hadn't realized how hungry I was, so we tore through most of the food in just a few minutes, and Dalia's Lyft still hadn't arrived. Jenny seemed preoccupied and was just moving her food around with her fork. Dalia looked at her with a concerned frown but apparently decided to give her some space.
"So Jake," she said, "where's Allison?"
"Alice."
"Whatever. She has to study tonight?"
"Umm….no…"
"Uh oh." A concerned look appeared on her face. "Did you guys…"
"Pretty much broke up. I think." There was an awkward moment. I shrugged casually, indicating to her that I was past the heartbreak stage.
"Too bad," said Dalia. "She was a cutie. Any chance I can I get her phone number?" She gave me a crooked but caring grin, and I knew she wasn't laughing at my situation, but just trying to get a laugh out of me to make me feel better. It worked. Jenny looked shocked for an instant and then howled with laughter and threw a fortune cookie at her girlfriend.
"Slut," she said.
"Bitch," replied Dalia. She got up, walked behind Jenny's seat and leaned over to give her a hug and kiss. "Going to miss you, angel."
"It's only a couple of days," replied Jenny.
"I know." But I could see a shadow cross Dalia's face. I could tell she was worried about Jenny and really didn't want to leave her. On cue, her phone buzzed.
"Well fuck. My ride's here. Hey Jake, come with me, I can drop you off, you're on the way."
"No babe, he just got here," said Jenny.
"Well, don't keep him too late, the buses are dicey this time of night."
"Well, I was going to ask him to stay over. Keep me company. What do you say, Jake?"
I was as surprised as Dalia, and I felt a guilty look flash on my face, even though I hadn't done anything.
There was an awkward pause in the conversation. Dalia arched an eyebrow and Jenny chewed her lower lip as they exchanged a long look.
I felt some sort of tension between them. I didn't understand it, but I felt like I'd somehow stepped into the middle of it. This wouldn't do. I opened my mouth to tell Dalia I'd go with her, but she shrugged and looked away from Jenny before I could speak.
"Cool," she said. "Well, you kids have a good time. Just don't do anything I wouldn't do."
"Oh. So we can use the strap on?" Jenny asked with a mock innocent smile. Dalia laughed and slapped her on the butt.
"Slut," she said.
"Bitch," Jenny replied. They melted into each other's arms and did their goodbye hug and kiss.
"Okay, Goliath," Dalia said to me. "Give me a hand with my suitcase?"
"Uh…sure," I said. It was an odd request, since her bag was small and she was a big, strong woman. I picked it up and followed her out the door and into the elevator. She was silent until we got to the car. After I tossed her bag into the trunk, she finally spoke up.
"Thanks for being here for her tonight," she said, giving me a powerful hug. She had a big-boned, full-bodied beauty that I really found attractive. As her breasts pressed into me, I flashed back to my earlier glimpse of her in lingerie, and my cock stiffened.
When we broke, she wiped a tear from her eye. "She's…kind of vulnerable right now, I really feel bad about leaving her. But it's a family thing, I have to go."
"She couldn't have gone with you?"
"No. My family….really hasn't accepted the situation. I can't expose her to that right now."
"Oh. Got it."
"So anyway…just take good care of her tonight, okay?" Then she was in the car and gone, leaving me confused as hell. But also frightened and excited.
++++++++++
After my one-sided fight with Howie, Jenny had gotten me out of the house fast. Down the block and out of sight, she gave me a quick hug and peck on the cheek which made me blush but made punching out my brother seem worthwhile.
"So I guess everyone knows about me," she said.
"Yeah. Everyone knows."
"I can't believe my parents would do that. I figured they'd just keep it to themselves, and I could tell a few people at my own pace. But the second I walked in…" she started to tear up. I reached out and we shared a longer, more meaningful hug.
"You were the first one I was going to talk to," she said. My pride swelled, knowing that she trusted me and viewed me as an adult. She pulled away, but took my hand as we started walking.
"Listen," she said. "There may be a shit storm when we get back. Let's just tell the truth. Howie was being horrible, you stood up for me, then you hit him in self-defense." Well, I thought, the slap wasn't exactly self-defense. But, okay, the punch was.
"Whatever they say, whatever Howie says, I got your back," she continued. A warm feeling spread through me when she said that. But as much I liked being a co-conspirator with her, I wasn't that worried.
"Howie won't say anything," I said. "He'd rather die than admit he got his ass kicked by his little brother."
"Hmmm….maybe…but the others?"
"They'll follow his lead. They always do."
But my confidence was tested a few minutes later when I saw my mom waiting for us in front of the house. Jenny nudged me with an elbow, which I knew meant she wanted me to shut up and let her do the talking.

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