A Trip to Bath and Older Men

“Aren’t you coming to Bath with us?” Chelsey asked Ruth.

Ruth shook her head. “No.”

“How come?”

“I just don’t feel up to it.”

“It’s such a beautiful day. Why would you want to spend it indoors?”

“If I want to enjoy the outdoors, I can go in the garden or go into the conservatory and look out.”

Chelsey shrugged. “Suit yourself.”

“I’m sure that Gideon and you will still have a good time without me.”

“Do you know something, Mom? If Gideon weren’t my step-father, I would go for him myself.”

Ruth looked startled. “Really?”

“Yes. He has all the qualities I’m looking for in a man.”

“Gideon is old enough to be your father.”

“So what? I’m not the first young woman to be attracted to a much older man.”

“You’re a teenager, Chelsey, not a young woman.”

“Why are people so hung up about age? So what if he’s in his fifties and I’m in my late teens?”

“I don’t want to hear any more of this foolish talk.”

“Why, does it make you uncomfortable?”

“Yes, it does.”

“Well, don’t get bent out of shape about it. Gideon is off limits because he’s married to you and besides, he’s mad about you.”

“Maybe you’ve been spending too much time with him.”

“I enjoy his company. I can talk to him about anything and he’s a great listener.”

“What about your friends?”

“What about them?”

“Don’t you think you should be spending more time with them?”

“I do spend time with them but there are times when I prefer to hang out with Gideon.”

“How do you expect to meet boys your age if you’re spending so much of your time with Gideon?”

“I’m not interested in teenage boys, Mom. I prefer older men.”

“What about men in their twenties?”

“Both of the men I’ve been with were in their late twenties.”

“What do you mean you’ve been with?”

“Mom, I’m not an innocent little girl. I was fifteen when I had my first sexual experience.”


“The guy thought I was older and when he found out that I was underaged, he got scared and dumped me. The second guy didn’t have a problem sleeping with a seventeen year old and we had been seeing each other for a year but he dumped me after I sent racy photos of us to his fiancée. She broke off their engagement. I ran into him in December and tried to rekindle our romance but he wanted nothing more to do with me and told me so to my face. He even had the nerve to call me a she-Devil.”

Ruth stared at her daughter in shock. “Chelsey, I feel like I don’t know you at all,” she said.

“Ok. What I did to him was terrible but, I know girls who have done worse things to the guys they have dated. One high-school student showed up at her married teacher’s home and told his wife about their affair. His wife divorced him and he lost his job at the school. The student had done it out of spite because he ended their affair.”

“What she did was unforgivable. She ruined two lives.”

“Isn’t that what adultery does? Ruin families?”

Ruth stiffened. Why was Chelsey looking at her like that? Did she suspect that she had cheated on her father and on Gideon? “Yes, I-I suppose it does.”

There was the sound of a blowing car horn. Chelsey got up. “Well, I’m off. What are you going to do while we’re gone?”

“Read, I guess and watch some television.”

“I hope you go for a walk.”

“Maybe I will. Have a good time in Bath.”

“I’m sure we will.” Chelsey went over to her and leaning over, she kissed her on the cheek before she walked out of the room.

Ruth got up from the chair and went over to the window which overlooked the courtyard. She stood there and watched as Chelsey ran to the car. She climbed in and after shutting the door, the car made its way down the long, winding driveway until it disappeared from view. Ruth turned away from the window. Yes, it was a beautiful day–too beautiful to stay at home.

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