Being a normally curious fourteen-year-old, I often thought about that greatest of all mysteries ─ sex, but I had little way of learning how it worked. In those days before computers, my school had no sex ed program, and I certainly wasn’t about to ask my mother. My father had left the family for parts unknown years before, so it was just me and Mom at home.
I had already discovered the glories of jerking off. Some of us boys talked about it in private, and I always did it alone in my room.
Until the day Mom found out.
Our house was an old one, and nothing in it was squared. Walls tilted slightly. Windows were difficult to open. Doors flew open on their own.
One day I was lying on my bed, jerking madly, when my door opened a little and Mom walked uninvited into my room. She gasped, and then yelled at me while I cowered before her.
Yelling was often her default mode of communication. I don’t remember all her precise words, only that she yelled how she was “shocked” and “angry” and “very disappointed”! I was totally embarrassed. What had been private had suddenly become an issue in my home.
Supper that night was a silent meal, and for the next few days we seldom spoke.
A week later, my dog Charlie and I were visiting my friend Josh, as we often did. We had known each other at school for years and had taken to visiting each other over the summers. I told him what had happened and he laughed. I knew he wouldn’t laugh if the same thing had happened to him. While we were talking, the light in the room grew dimmer. Looking out the widow, I saw that the sky had grown threatening. I said that I’d better get home before Charlie and I got soaked. I grabbed my bike and raced the two miles to my house, Charlie trotting along beside me. We were halfway home when the heavens opened and I finished the ride in a deluge. When I pulled into the unpaved driveway, I barely paid attention to the car parked there, although as Charlie and I raced into the house, I wondered briefly whose it was.
We hurried through the empty living room, stopped in the bathroom to grab a couple of large towels, and went into my bedroom, where I stripped down, tossing my soaking wet clothes on the floor, and dried off both myself and Charlie.
From my dresser drawer, I pulled out a pair of underwear. As I was putting them on, I heard a sound and Charlie’s ears went up. At first it sounded like a little gasp. It was followed by a pounding thud… thud… thud.
Curious because I couldn’t identify the origin of the sound, I went into the hallway. It was then that I heard my mother groan and cry out.
“Yes! Oh, yes! Oh, God, I love it! Harder! Harder! Oh yes!”
Her bedroom door had popped open, and I saw her and a man, both of them naked. He was lying on her and thrusting repeatedly. I was horrified. I knew what was happening. It was the same thing Charlie sometimes did when he found a willing female dog.
Mom was getting screwed. The thuds coming from her room had to be her bed hitting the wall as the unknown man performed the act.
I suppose I sort of knew that my mother had had sex before I was born. Otherwise, how could I exist? I was sure I wasn’t a product of immaculate conception. But it had never occurred to me that she had sex more than that one time. Whoever thinks of their parents doing it?
I had to flee. I couldn’t stay in the house another moment. I raced out the back door. The ground was so wet my feet squelched, and I climbed on a little table between the house and the shed. The torrent bucketed down on the metal roof of our shed and beat on my back. The rain brought the beginning of a cold front, and it grew chilly. Trying to make myself as small as possible, I pulled my knees up to my chest and shivered.
What should I do? I knew I couldn’t sit out in the rain forever, but I couldn’t bring myself to return to the house.
That was the afternoon my life completely changed. I was no longer a somewhat innocent, if curious, child. I heard the front door of the house close and a car door open. From where I was sitting I couldn’t see the man, but I decided I didn’t really want to.
A little after the car departed, Mom stood at the back door, Charlie beside her. His panting looked almost like he was smiling. She asked why I was sitting nearly naked in the back yard in the pouring rain.
I shrugged my shoulders and went back into the house and to my room, where again I dried myself off with a towel and pulled on shorts and a T-shirt.
When I returned to the living room, Mom was sitting on the couch, smoking a cigarette. That in itself was unusual. She never smoked unless she was really agitated. Wine was more her sin of preference.
As I sat in a chair facing her, Charlie jumped off the couch and into my lap.
“So tell me,” she said, “why you were in the backyard in the pouring rain?”
“Because I had to get out of the house,” I replied.
I decided it was payback time. As I told her what I’d heard and seen, her face grew first red and then the color drained from it. I finished by saying, “I was shocked and angry and very disappointed.”
She stubbed out her cigarette, went into the kitchen, and poured herself a large tumbler of white wine.
Returning to the living room she took a big swallow and said, “I’m sorry.”
“Maybe,” I said, “but I’ll bet you’d do it again.”
“Of course I would. I’m a healthy woman with healthy desires. I’m not sorry that I did it. I’m sorry that you observed it. It was supposed to be a private moment.”
“Well, I’m sorry you observed me jerking off. That too was supposed to be private.”
“I suppose you knew that your parents did it,” I observed.
“I never thought about that when they were alive.”
“What about the man who was… here? Do you love him?”
“Oh, no. He’s just a friend from work.”
“If you loved him, I’d understand, I guess.”
“It’s really none of your business,” she said sharply.
“Neither is what you found me doing any of your business,” I shot back.
The next morning I rode my bicycle to the hardware store, purchased a couple of items, and rode home.
With Charlie watching, I made some adjustments to both our doors.
When Mom came home from work, I was in my bedroom, jerking off and grinning to myself. I had perhaps the best climax I’d had to date. Finished, I cleaned myself off and, after a few minutes, unfastened the new bolt I’d installed on my door and went into the living room. Later, I told her about the bolts I’d put on both our bedroom doors.
From then on, we respected each other’s privacy, but of course I never saw her, or sex, in quite the same way again.
This story was originally written for a challenge on another site, but not submitted in time. It is based on the picture in the story’s title.
Many thanks to my editors for their help and to Mike for maintaining this excellent site.