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In Search of the Final Freedom: Chapter 52

In Search of the Final Freedom:

An Erotic Socio-Political Novel:


Sounding the Clarian Call

Chapter 52

Duluth, Minnesota

On Friday while Cooper was taking a half-an-hour rest break before getting dressed to go to Herb and Sherri’s for dinner, Bonnie was finally arriving at her destination. She pulled her coat closed, the cold was bitter, possibly the coldest weather she had ever experienced. She quickened her pace to cross the tarmac from the small plane to the terminal as fast as possible. She had most definitely gotten over the glamour of flying across the country to speak. This was her second flight of the long day: Atlanta to Chicago, Chicago to Duluth. How did Amy book an engagement almost to the Canadian border in late December?

She moved fast having gotten her travel kit down to a science. She pulled her small rolling suitcase with her clothes & personal items, and she carried a well-worn leather briefcase she’d stolen from her husband with her MacBook, iPad, and FFF literature. She certainly felt like a seasoned business traveler, even if it had only been just over three months since her first trip for the FFF. Exiting the one-room terminal to the small concourse, she had no problem finding the woman holding up a sign that said “Campbell.”

“Welcome to Duluth Ms. Campbell. I am Gayle Simmons-Perkins, the regional coordinator for The Free Thought Society.”

“Oh, I rate the big cheese” Bonnie quipped.

As she took Bonnie’s suitcase, the young woman laughingly said, “Not really, I’m the only paid staffer in the Great Lakes Region, so I get the title.”

Right off Bonnie liked her. Her response had been just so natural, so utterly devoid of pretense that it came out funny, though she was sure it had not been meant that way.

Exiting the terminal, the cold bit into Bonnie. She had worn her heaviest coat but it was clearly inadequate for the job. By the time they reached Gayle’s Subaru, she was shivering. This was the first regional convention to which she had been invited to speak. She had two different lectures to present. It seems that in her proposal to the Free Thought Society, Amy wrote that Bonnie could conduct two lectures at the conference. And that is what she was booked to do.

One of Bonnie’s two lectures was basically the main multi-media presentation which she had presented four times in the past two weeks. She was very confident in her ability to do it well. The only change was sheering off the first fifteen minutes of the lecture and expanding on the time she gave to efforts to suppress public expressions of sexuality in the US since about 1900. In this new version, she had time to talk at length about the effects of the Comstock Laws and the Hays Code. Both of these things she was familiar with since she liked to be able to answer questions well beyond her outline.

The material on public sexuality in the ancient world, carved from the main presentation, was moved to a new lecture. This new presentation specifically focused on how sexuality in the ancient world was mostly public and permissive until Christian & Islamic hegemony crept over the globe. The two competing monotheistic ideologies agreed on one point: prioritizing the need to drive sexuality out of public view, especially for women. Her primary thesis in this new lecture was that for the past 1,500 years, controlling sex has become central to controlling the population by authoritarian governments across most of the globe. Bonnie, Cooper, and a colleague of his at work, Dr. Osgood, had all worked on this new two-part lecture just for this trip. It remained to be seen if they would do this again.

In addition to the two lectures, Bonnie knew she was also to be part of a panel discussion called Divergent Views. She wasn’t sure what that was.

“Forgive my ignorance,” Bonnie asked as the car drove down the snowy road “What exactly is the Free Thought Society?”

Pulling her car out of the parking lot, the young woman gladly replied, “It’s really an umbrella organization for a number of smaller groups. However, as the FTS we are able to publish a monthly journal, maintain a website, sponsor individual lectures and regional conventions like this. The common theme of all the groups is a desire to free our society from historically confining fears, dogma, and censorship. We are mostly a coalition of political & philosophical academics and social justice activists. We have just been adding some interactive features to our website to help our outreach.”

“Ah, yes, the website thing, “Bonnie said with a bit of despondence. “Now that the FFF website is up and running, I’ve been told I should start blogging. Whatever blogging is” Bonnie griped.

“Oh, I’ve been blogging for a year now,” Gayle offered. “I’d be glad to help you get started.”

Bonnie was grateful for any help in that regard. They talked about it for a little while, then Bonnie asked. “How many speakers do you have for the conference?”

“We have twenty-one presenters for the day. Most only have one lecture and one forum. You do know you have two lectures? I must say from the material I’ve seen, I’m looking forward to your presentations.”

“If you’re looking for new ideas, I think I have enough to get everyone buzzing.” And so, the conversation went on until they arrived at the Radisson. Ms. Simmons-Perkins, let her off in front of the downtown convention hotel saying, “I am afraid I can’t walk you in, due to a flight delay, I have to go back to the airport to pick up a pair of speakers who were supposed to be arriving before you. The check-in desk is in the main lobby so you can get checked in now. If in the morning you could come by Conference Room “D” between 8:30 and 9:30 to ensure that there have been no changes to the times and places you are scheduled to speak. There will also be a continental breakfast for presenters there. I will see you then.”

Bonnie waved and thanked her for the ride. The truth was she was grateful to have someone meet her at the airport. One thing she’d already learned was that those groups who sent a car for her were much more interested in what she had to say, and those cases where a senior official picked her up preceded the very best events. After checking into the hotel, she stopped off at the conference’s check-in desk, “Oh, Ms. Campbell… or is it Dr. Campbell?” The middle-aged woman at the desk replied when Bonnie gave her name.

“Oh, just plain old Ms. Campbell” Bonnie replied, though she found the question a little odd.

The woman looked through several pages of names and then said, “Oh yes, here you are.” She looked up, smiling, “Oh, you are a presenter.” She then pulled a cardboard box from under the table and looked through a series of manilla envelopes before pulling one out. “You are the one from the Final Freedom Foundation. Ever since the speakers and topic lists were put online, people have been talking about your presentations. Though we tend to be old-school liberals, many of us have become a little stodgy, and there is real excitement at the prospect of something really new this year.”

Bonnie knew her topic was always a little titillating, but the idea people at this conference had been excited about her lectures was not expected.

The woman pulled out a name badge that read Bonnie Campbell in large letters above the words: Final Freedom Foundation, and Presenter. Attached to the badge were two blue “Presenter” ribbons. “If you could wear this until the conference ends tomorrow night. Tonight there are two Earlybird sessions at 7:00 PM and from 7-9:00 PM there is a Meet & Greet with Hors D'oeuvre and wine in Ballroom “B”. I would very much hope you will make an effort to go by to meet some of our members, I am sure you will get a good reception.”

Bonnie thanked the woman and made her way to the elevator and then to her room. One thing was unusual for her, she wasn’t actually presenting on Friday evening, but if there was an official time for the conference members to meet the speakers, she felt an obligation to go, though she was not in a hurry. Sitting on the bed, she went through the packet of information. Looking through the other sessions, she knew one thing for sure, judging by the lecture names and descriptions, most of the sessions seemed pretentious and dull.

Readily she decided that if she had come to this conference simply to hear speakers, she would choose to attend both of the sessions by the lady from the Final Freedom Foundation. After the description of her two presentations, there was a little caveat: Warning: These presentations include images of nudity and sexuality. She was sure that would simply ensure she gets a bigger audience tomorrow.

She had not really packed for an event tonight, so she simply stayed in her travel clothes, though she did don the name badge with the presenter’s ribbon on it when she went down the elevator at around 7:45 PM. This was clearly a convention hotel with an entire wing for conference rooms and ballrooms. Though, as she saw from Ballroom “B” the term “ballroom” in the context of a hotel, no longer meant anything like it did in the 19th Century. It was simply a large open space with a twenty-foot ceiling. The hotel had gone to some effort to make it feel like a lounge, with small and medium-sized round tables and even a selection of sofas along the walls. In the center of the room was a long buffet table with finger foods. There appeared to be two bars, one unattended with complimentary bottles of water, juice, and soft drinks; the other had two attendants and appeared to be a cash bar with beer, wine, and liquor.

Unlike when she normally showed up as speaker, she was not wearing one of her deliberately provocative speaking outfits. Instead, she’d dressed for traveling in the cold, in pants and a sweater. She, very unusually, had zero cleavage showing. The only thing that might set her apart after she had removed her coat was the low-rise pants and sweater combo that left several inches of skin showing between them. That and the fact the open-cup bra she wore under her sweater showed quite visible nipple bumps. With her coat on, none of that had been exposed to the cold at all, but in the ballroom, it drew some eyes. Bonnie had been dressing to get attention since she was a teenager, and even in her twenty years of monogamy, she still reveled in the looks her outfits drew… especially when she was out of town. But in the last two years, she had stepped up the skin and sexiness factor significantly beyond what she had even done in college.

She collected a good supply of food on a small plate, after all, airline food could hardly be called food these days, and a bottle of water before looking for a place to sit. Before she had decided where to go, a middle-aged woman and man approached her, “You are Ms. Campbell, from the Final Freedom Foundation. Right?”

Bonnie turned, “Yes, I am.”

“If you don’t have someone waiting for you, there are a group of us who would love it if you joined us at our table.”

What followed surprised Bonnie quite a bit. None of the group of writers and college professors asked questions about the sex or nudity warned about in her lecture, but rather they were interested in the FFF itself; its aims, its origination, and what kinds of projects it plans on funding. She actually found the change from what people normally asked about quite refreshing. As they talked, she realized that these were genuine professional activists who saw the importance of organization and administration. She also realized she really wasn’t up to speed on all the things they asked. At one point she had to say “I’m afraid since I’ve primarily been on the road for the past few months, I don’t really know about all the different projects that are being considered. That is primarily Dr. Douglass’s domain. I guess that is a lapse on my part. Over the fall I’ve been bogged down in doing dull administrative things when I’m not working on new presentations, like the brand-new one I will be presenting tomorrow. What I can say is our web presence is still in the rollout phase. What we have now is just sort of a list of the Foundation’s writings and some links. There is a proper website under construction, and it will have those kinds of things on it once it launches sometime after the holidays.”

She was thankful when the woman who had first approached her nodded with understanding. “I’ve been in your shoes. Sometimes there is just too much to do, especially with a new start-up project.”

As she sat and chatted for the next hour, the original group who’d invited her to join them one by one excused themselves and were replaced by a younger group. The original group were middle-aged & elderly, while the new group was made of those in their mid-20s to mid-30s. The questions posed by the younger people were different, more about her speaking topics. A woman who appeared in her early 20s, likely a student of some sort, asked about the warning regarding her lecture in the conference schedule.

Bonnie just replied, “Well, if I am going to talk about the suppression of sexual thought and practice over the past centuries, it just seems necessary to show the kinds of images that are suppressed. Sure, I know that some people will be offended by the images containing nudity and sex, but the truth is, those are not the kind of people who will be supporting the FFF in our mission.” Her direct answer seemed to satisfy the young woman. To Bonnie, she saw this conversation as a promo for her lectures, after all, she’d rather have a hundred people in her sessions than ten. Thus, she spoke in broad terms or focused on historical details that she’d had to drop from the presentation due to time constraints.

At 9:00, the staff began removing the food, by 9:30, nearly all the other tables had been stripped and it was clear the hotel staff were waiting for Bonnie’s table to vacate the ballroom. By this time there were still seven people sitting with Bonnie, five of them had been engaged for a long time and Bonnie had enjoyed the conversation. When they finally left the ballroom, all of those five assured her they would be in her sessions tomorrow. The last two, a couple that seemed to be in their early 30s had been very attentive but had not participated in the conversation as much. She recalled their first names to be Isabel and Carl, though she could not recall any more about them.

When the others left, the woman, Isabel, said “I’m sorry, but we’ve been sort of waiting to ask you some things. In the past few days, we’ve been looking over all the stuff your website has up. I know it is still in construction, but there is still a lot there, and… well we thought perhaps you could help us out of some confusion.” She lowered her voice “About sex… sex outside of marriage. We have some questions that we thought might be better to ask in private.”

Bonnie wasn’t too surprised to hear someone wanted to ask questions they thought might be embarrassing, at least to them. This was not a swing club after all. She knew many things she talked about freely would mortify the vast majority of Americans. And one thing she’d come to believe strongly was that many couples had questions about sex outside of marriage, yet had no one they trusted to ask. It had come as a surprise to her over the past months how many couples who she’d met at swing clubs had never actually had sex outside of their marriage. Pretty much every week she was approached by at least one couple with moral, religious, or even practical questions as they thought about having their first experience in “swinging”. Twice in the past two months while at a swing club, she’d talked on and off with a couple all through the night in that category before inviting them to join her in her hotel room. She had enjoyed introducing both of those couples into a new way of living, and she thought she’d done it with sensitivity to their needs.

“Sure, I’d love to be of help if I can.” She looked around, thinking of where to go. “Would you like to go to the lobby, or perhaps the hotel’s bar? Or, they’ve put me up in a nice room with a nice little sitting area, that might be the most comfortable for you if the questions are sensitive.” She saw their hesitation and so she added, “Don’t worry, I won’t try to seduce you. I don’t play those kinds of games. If later on I’m interested in you joining me in bed, I’ll just ask you directly. Or you could ask me. I’m not saying that is going to happen, only that we will be upfront about everything.”

Of course, she knew that if they did say they wanted to go to her room to talk, there stood a very good chance they would be in her bed too. The woman, who seemed quite plain, but in an attractive wall-flower sort of way. The man was decidedly more sexually attractive, tall & fit, but seemed to dress to downplay his physique. Bonnie thought their appearance together said a lot about them. The woman looked to her husband, who not surprisingly was noncommittal… up until she gave a slight nod to indicate she wanted to go upstairs. When she did the man mirrored her response and the woman, turned and said “OK, we will take you up on your offer to talk in your room.” Then added “But you have to let us pay for the room service to bring us some wine and perhaps a fruit tray.”

Bonnie agreed,

They stopped by the front desk to order room service before the trio took the elevator to the twelfth floor, and went to room 1235. Bonnie’s room was nice for a business hotel, while it was not a suite, it did have a comfortable sitting area with a love seat and a recliner. Bonnie invited them to sit together on the love seat, while she took one of the overstuffed chairs. She made a little bit of a show of taking off her winter boots to relax. “This is my first time this far north, and the cold was something I’d never experienced before.”

The younger couple laughed and spoke about the challenges of living through the brutal Minnesota winters. Bonnie’s ploy to help put them at ease had succeeded. They even came back with comments about her “pretty” accent. She’d not realized the way she talked stood out, she prided herself in her careful grammar, but apparently, to this young couple she sounded like a hick. She would keep that in mind for her presentations tomorrow. Taking care not to appear to be rushing them she asked, “So, you think a woman from the sticks of Georgia might be of some help? How so?”

The woman, Isabel, answered, “We weren’t trying to be offensive about your accent. I really do think it’s pretty.”

Bonnie gave a genuine laugh, and with her true Tennessee mountain accent she said “Oh, honey, I grew up a true hillbilly in the backside of beyond.” Then shifting to a deliberately standard American English dialect she finished “My years at Vanderbilt might have polished me up, but it didn’t change who I am.” She paused and thought then added, “Perhaps I don’t give my roots enough credit. I am the daughter and granddaughter of moonshiners from the Cumberland Mountains, and while I got a first-class college education, married into an old and respected Georgia family, and have lived the life of the Southern gentry for twenty years; yet, it is my earthy roots that allow me to stand in front of audiences and talk candidly about sex without the slightest blush.” Once again in her mountain accent, she declared, “Yep, we hillbillies do three things better than anyone, fight, fuck, and make moonshine.”

Both her guests laughed.

Bonnie laughed too and added, “Though to be honest, my relations back in the mountains would disown me if they knew that these days, I only drink wine.”

The couple laughed again. Bonnie was sure she was drawing them in.

“But they’d be downright impressed if’n they saw how much I fuck at my age.”

The couple forced a laugh, but Bonnie could tell that was one joke too far. “Sorry if sometimes I get carried away. What is it I can help you two with?”

Jennifer looked at her husband and then started right in with a little background on them. They both worked at Two Harbors high school in Two Harbors, MN, about twenty-five miles north of Duluth. He taught math and she was a guidance counselor. They have been married for twelve years and have a five-year-old and a three-year-old, both of whom were staying the weekend with her mother. All in all, they seemed to Bonnie to be a very conventional couple from a small town.

“Might I take it that your website, is still a work in progress?”

Bonnie laughed, “Oh you can say that. In fact, what is there only went live the day we sent the lecture summaries and my bio for this conference’s online catalog. I think that was less than two weeks ago. We are in the process of hiring someone that will have website development as part of their job. It is nothing that I am qualified or interested in doing.”

Both Isabel and her husband nodded in understanding… or perhaps agreeing that the website is pitiful. Carl said, “While the layout is pretty primitive, it still has some very interesting content. The position papers and articles certainly stake out your organization is something we’ve not seen before.”

Isabel added, “The links to articles and photos from the New York art show were eye-opening. Not just the art, but the statement you and several of the FFF board members made by what you wore to that opening night. Not so much by Gillian Moyers’s bare-breasted outfit, because… well she’s an actress who makes her living by doing things like that; but you and Dr. Douglass and Dr. McKinnon are academics, not entertainers. You had to know wearing those totally see-through dresses posed risks to your careers. That was bold and showed real commitment.”

Bonnie countered, “For them you are right, but for me, I’m just a former school teacher, my job at the FFF is my first in seventeen years. The FFF certainly isn’t going to fire me for wearing that outfit.”

Carl burst out, “Well Isabel and I think you looked fine in that dress. Not one of those celebrities had anything on you.” Then he blushed as if he’d not meant to say that.

His wife came to his rescue, “Yes, it’s true, we both think you looked amazing. I suspect that those photos were how people recognized you down in the Meet & Greet. And I know Carl is dying to ask, but won’t… now that we see you in person, we are pretty sure the woman in the FFF logo is you. Is that right?”

Bonnie smiled. She knew it was vain, but it never ceased to please her when people commented on the logo. “Yes, that’s me and my husband Cooper. The sculpture was made by a group of Amy Douglass’s students from photos Amy took of us making love in her studio.” The other couple’s eyes went wide. She was sure they’d assumed those who had made the sculpture had used only their artist’s imagination, not actual photographs of them doing it.

Isabel disabused Bonnie of her assumption by saying, “On the Foundation’s website is a link to Dr. Douglass’s WordPress blog. In it, there are several postings about the process of making the sculpture. She included her original design sketch, then explained the grad students used reference photos she had taken of you and your husband… uh… doing it, right in her studio for another project.”

Bonnie nodded, “As I told you, I’m pretty earthy and not easily embarrassed. The fact photos of me making love to my husband were pinned on a board in a university studio for weeks doesn’t bother me at all.”

Isabel just shook her head, “I just can’t imagine. But, from what Dr. Douglass reports of your travels, a lot of things you do I just couldn’t. Presenting at a nudist resort, in the nude. No, no way could I do that. Carl and I have gone to co-ed steam rooms on our visits to his grandparents’ hometown in Norway. You see, his grandfather was a noted academic in Norway, but when the Nazis took over the country, he and his girlfriend, Carl’s grandmother, escaped and were able to immigrate to the US. So, we aren’t prudes by any stretch, but going naked in a steam room with five or six others is nothing like standing in front of a whole room full of people… and then giving an academic lecture like that.”

Bonnie laughed, “Yes, I can see how you would think that. But Amy, Dr. Douglass, only told of what I was doing for the FFF. Going nude in public was not new for me.” On a whim, and not trying to seduce them, she reached into her briefcase to take her iPad from the lid pocket. On it, she had several photo directories she used at different FFF venues (all were password protected).

As she located the directory she was looking for, Bonnie said “Since apparently you are not as offended by nudity as people where I live, perhaps this will help put things into perspective.” She opened the directory that held two dozen photos from their first family trip to Miami Beach, about a third were from the set taken at Haulover. Handing the iPad to Isabel, she said “We don’t live in the frozen north, and our home swimming pool is usable nearly half of the year. We live out in the country and from the time when our kids were younger than yours, swimwear has always been optional for the family. So, when our son was fourteen and our daughter was sixteen, we had no problem going to Miami Beach where both our daughter and I went topless essentially the entire time.”

She waited till Isabel and Carl had swiped through the first dozen or so images, before she added “And when our daughter asked if I would take her to the nude beach the last day we were there… I did.”

She could tell the couple worked at keeping their faces impassive as they looked at the photos. Without looking from the iPad, Isabel said, “I don’t know if I should be more impressed with your daughter for having the nerve to ask her mother to take her to a nude beach, or of you for doing it. You say she was sixteen at the time?”

Bonnie nodded, “She’d just turned sixteen a couple of months before. But she is, and has always had a very strong self-image. After the first few giggles when she and I took off our clothes, she was as comfortable as could be. Perhaps too comfortable. Because when a group of college guys asked to take our photos, with the promise they would not share them; we both gave them permission. And we told them that Misty, my daughter, was eighteen, not sixteen.”

Isabel, looking up said, “But they put them on the internet anyway. Right?”

“Of course, they did,” Bonnie replied. “Actually, they didn’t put them on the net, they sold them to a porn company that created a whole website built around them. But without those photos showing up on the internet and then at her school, I think I can safely say, I would not be here tonight. There is nothing quite like defending your child to push a mother out of her comfort zone.”

Isabel looked up, “Yes. Those who attack our kids don’t realize how they only galvanize their mother’s support, no matter what. We mama bears defend our cubs.”

Bonnie nodded in agreement.

Isabel went on, “This actually brings up one of the things I wanted to ask you. I guess I could have waited till your Q&A session tomorrow, but since I have you here for a private audience…” She gave a grin. “On the website was a new posting just a couple of days ago that goes right to my work at the high school. It was eye-opening and I’ve already sent the link to several of my colleagues at other high schools. It is an article, in which your husband is a co-author. It is entitled, A Rebuttal to the Pathologizing of Adolescent Sex in the USA. I’ve never seen such a full-throated attack on the myth that sex is bad for high school students. Do you know which article I’m speaking of?”

Bonnie nodded, “Yes. I was involved in that project but not in the writing. Rather I sort of needled… or used my husband to needle, Dr. McKinnon and Dr. Fletcher, from our board, to take on the issue in a formal way from the very first month the FFF was formed, even while I was still just a volunteer. But I did write the grant proposal for the FFF to fund their research, so I feel I have some ownership of that particular project. The article you saw on the website is a layman’s narrative of the research they and their graduate assistants completed for an article that has been submitted to a couple of important journals. My husband is listed as a co-author because he has a knack for taking highly complex academic jargon and making it both comprehensible and compelling to an audience outside of academia. So, while the content was by Dr. McKinnon, Dr. Fletcher and their research assistants, the actual words you read online were my husband’s.”

Both Isabel and Carl nodded in understanding before Isabel said “Yes, now that you say it, the article on the website was much easier to read than one finds in journals, less dry and much more compelling. When I saw how the authors…well, I guess your husband, boldly stated that when done with safety in mind and absent from abuse, sex should be seen as a positive experience for most high school students; I was both delighted and shocked. He, and thus your group, didn’t just say, ‘not-so-bad’ but laid out a case that sex should be treated as a positive factor in adolescent emotional and social development. Even though many of us actually think that is so, it would be professional suicide to say it out loud.”

Bonnie replied, “Yes, I know you are right, it’s one of those things that we’ve been conditioned not to say, even when we know it is true. I don’t know about you, but I had a great sex life in high school and I have nothing but fond memories. Even more, by taking charge of my body, my self-directed sex life was part of a pattern of self-empowerment that let me escape the multi-generational poverty of the community where I was born.”

Isabel nodded, “I thought I was the only one like that. While I was not outgoing or popular, I still had a full share of sex in high school. Mine was the first internet generation and we were the first to trade ‘friends with benefits for coupling up. In my last two years of high school, I had sex with several guys from my French club and the Honors Society… of which I was the president. It was never really serious or about me becoming their girlfriend or something like that. It was about feeding my libido and a show of personal empowerment. Looking back, it was about us academic nerds trying to claim some of the good things that were heaped on the pretty bimbos and jocks. Here in Minnesota, attitudes are way more relaxed about teen sex than in more conservative parts of the country, which is reflected in easy access to contraception and that we have one of the lowest teen pregnancy rates in the US.”

“When I was sixteen and told my mother I wanted to go on birth control, she just said ‘It’s about time.’ But even while teen sex wasn’t the big taboo it is in other places, my partners and I still felt we had to keep what we did under wraps. So, like in my home, my brother, sister, and I all had sex in our own bedrooms but we never talked about it, and we were very quiet when we did… unless Mom and Dad were both out. Even here in Minnesota, there is still social pressure to keep teen sex out of sight and mind. Now that I’m a school official, I hate that I sometimes have to endorse things that imply that sex is inherently detrimental to my students and I am expected to strongly discourage it. Lying to my students simply undermines my credibility when I need them to listen to me; like when I talk about safer sex protocols. At least here in Minnesota, I am not required to promote the abstinence-only garbage to our kids that school guidance counselors in your part of the country are forced to do. Mostly I just sidestep issues of sex unless I’m directly asked by a student, and am in the privacy of my office.”

Bonnie could only nod. From Slosh and Collette, she’d heard the nonsensical and counterproductive things that school personnel were required to tell students at Jefferson Davis High.

Isabel then moved toward her actual question, “From what I read on the website, you and your husband actually lead some sort of program for teenagers at your church, and if I recall it right, hundreds of high school kids come on their own every week to your meetings. That seems confusing to me since all we ever hear about churches in your part of the country is how they are opposed to everything that article says. How do you reconcile the two positions on teen sex?”

“I don’t,” Bonnie answered. “What you read in the article is exactly what Cooper and I teach to the teens who come to our meetings. Oh, and it’s not like several hundred kids come to our meetings, though it would be nice if they did. For the past six or eight months, we rarely have fewer than a hundred and twenty-five-teens. And, you are so right, teenagers don’t like to be lied to, so we don’t and they respect us because of that. Despite what people would expect, and what I’d actually expected to happen, after those nude beach photos became public, attendance at our youth meetings has only grown. Actually, it has grown significantly. The scandal forced me to either deny what I believe or to openly embrace things my husband and I kept mostly under wraps until then. Since every single one of the teens in our youth group have seen those photos, which included a couple of me having sex with one of the college guys, the choice was made for us. So, since then we’ve been only slightly coding the message that teenage sex is not harmful or anti-Christian in our youth meetings. We don’t say it outright, but they get the message. However, when the teens come to my house, my husband and I are very explicit in what we say. Both in the need for things like consent and safety, but also that the joy of adolescent sex is a gift from God that they are free to embrace when they are at my house.”

The conversation progressed for another ten minutes before Isabel cautiously asked how Bonnie treated her own children’s sexual explorations. When she blithely said that both Misty and Lamar openly engaged in explicit sexual behavior in full view of her and her husband, it was the first thing in all their talk that seemed to really take the couple aback. After a little longer, Bonnie realized this couple was asking for advice on raising their own children. With that in mind, she began to go over the high points of the lecture she’d done in Cancun on a sexually open home. She opened the directory on her iPad to the visuals for that presentation. She handed it to them and let them scroll through the sixty or so images while she talked. When they came to the last three photos, she told Isabel and Carl, “Each one of the last three pictures were taken by our seventeen-year-old daughter, Misty, between August and November.” The first image was of Cooper having sex with Heather in the pool and the second was of Bonnie, Cooper & Amy’s threesome. The final image, Bonnie explained, Misty had taken expressly for the presentation, just the evening before she’d left for Cancun. It was of Bonnie having sex with Butch in their kitchen. Sure, Bonnie knew that was a staged photo shoot, not a candid snapshot, but it made the point that her daughter wasn’t the least bit bothered by taking explicit, up-close photos of her mother having sex.

While the two young parents looked at the images, Bonnie said, “For our two kids, seeing sex in our home is just a normal part of life and has been as long as they can remember. Seeing it, or being seen doing it, brings no embarrassment or shame whatsoever. We teach the teens who look to us for guidance that is how it should be. That truth is also central to my work with the FFF.”

It took more conversation for the young couple to process what Bonnie was saying. Finally, Isabel grasped that both family nudity and sex could be just part of their own children’s life if they chose to make it so. While she and Carl didn’t say they would do so, they were grateful Bonnie had let them know it was an option. Finally, Isabel said “I guess the photos answer another question I had from reading the material on your website. In reading everything on the FFF website, it seemed to indicate that you and your husband have sex with others; but it wasn’t clear.” She looked down at the photo on the screen of Butch screwing Bonnie as she sat in one of the kitchen’s island chairs, “And then you hinted downstairs that you did, but by letting us see these photos, the answer is clear.”

Bonnie nodded, “Yes, we do. My husband has never once asked me to promise not to have sex with other men. Never. When we were dating, I let him know quite clearly that I continued to have sex with other guys, when we got engaged, I stopped, but neither of us really discussed it. When we chose our wedding vows, we deliberately did not include references to monogamy, not that I planned on screwing around, but out of principle. But, from the day I put on my engagement ring, I chose not to have sex with others for nearly twenty years. As you know with two young children, they consume your world, and so it wasn’t an issue. But there came a point in my life when my kids were becoming teens, I began to feel that need and we started talking about it. A few years ago my decades of monogamy came to an end when my best friend and I became sexually involved. Before we first had full sex, I told Cooper what we were up to. Then, before she brought her husband over for me to have sex with him, I again checked to be sure Cooper still believed as he’d said over the years, that my body was my own. He did, and the next day I had the wonderful feeling of a new penis inside of me for the first time since I was twenty-one years old.”

Isabel turned to Carl, then back to Bonnie. “I guess I’m more conventional. While I had sex with a number of guys in college before I met Carl, I only had sex once with another guy while we were dating. While we dated, we never explicitly talked about it, there was sort of an understanding that dating meant monogamy. Our traditional wedding vows stated we would only cleave to one another and we both certainly planned to. But a year after we got married, when I started my master’s program at Wisconsin-Duluth, I cheated on him with an older man from my program cohort. Not just once, but , regularly for nearly two years. It wasn’t planned… well not at first. ”

She again turned to her husband as if asking if she should go on. Bonnie was sure this was what the entire meeting was about.

“You see, Carl and I got married the summer before our senior year, and after we graduated, we took jobs at Three Harbors High. While he could get a full teaching certificate with his bachelor’s degree, my Guidance Counselor certificate was only provisional with the stipulation I had to be actively working on my master’s degree. So, I started on that program right off, while he waited till I was done to start his program. The plan was once we both finished, we would start a family. Which is what we did.

So, a little more than a year after we were married, I began in the master’s program in guidance at the University of Wisconsin-Duluth. A funny thing seemed to have happened when I became a grad student, as a married woman, I got more attention from guys than I ever had before.”

Carl put in, “Oh, I know what it is. You were much more relaxed once you saw yourself as a professional, rather than a college student. And, frankly, you looked better in the professional-looking clothes you started wearing than you did in your ‘I don’t care how I look’ clothes you wore as an undergraduate student.”

Her head snapped around. Clearly, he’d never said that before. Or perhaps she’d just not heard it when he had. But, after a moment, she turned back to Bonnie. “Yea, I guess he’s right, adulting looked good on me. The program I was in was set up as a cohort, with fifteen of us taking all the same classes. The idea was that since most of us would be spending our careers right here in the Lake Superior region, we would build relationships that would become the basis of a professional community that would last decades. Since most of us were in our twenties working at schools in towns all over the region, it has worked out just as the university planned. Nearly a decade after I received my master’s degree, those people are still my closest colleagues. When I said I sent your husband’s article out, it was mostly to people I’d gone to school with. In addition to the eleven of us who were more or less just out of our undergrad, there were four older people seeking guidance certification mid-career, three were women moving from the classroom, but one was already an assistant superintendent. That was who I had my affair with.”

Bonnie just nodded.

“From the very first day of class, he seemed to pay me special attention. Looking back, I was so naive, and he was such a creep; but, at the time I ate up the attention of a man who was so high up the ladder, as I was just getting started. We went to class Monday through Thursday evenings from 6:30-9:00 and within a couple of weeks, Gerald was walking me to my car after class, putting his hand on my arm and shoulder. While there was a little warning bell in my brain, mostly I loved the attention. I knew this was going somewhere when one night about a month in, as we walked through the parking lot, he put and kept his hand on my ass. The next night, he kissed me beside my car. I knew where this was going, and I’ve kicked myself a thousand times for not doing something to stop it.”

Carl put his hand on her arm and said “It’s OK, that was a long time ago.”

She nodded and went on “From the first week, after class on Thursday, a group of us would stop by The Dog Pound, a hang-out for students just off campus, for nachos and a beer or two before heading home. None of the four older people in our cohort had ever joined us there; but, the night after he first kissed me, Gerald showed up. He was actually quite popular with my classmates. Though he was in his mid-40s, he was tall and quite handsome. By then my peers all could tell something was brewing between us, despite the fact we were both married. At the table that night he openly put his arm around me, then ran his hand up my thigh, right up to my crotch. It was intoxicating, enhanced by the couple of beers I’d downed. When he suggested we excuse ourselves for a few minutes, my heart leaped. I didn’t know what was going to happen, but I was ready. The truth is I don’t recall how we went from the pub, to walking out into the alley to me bent over, my pants pulled down and him fucking me hard.

What I do remember is how turned on I was, even after he’d cum and we’d gone back in to join the others. In my mind, everyone knew I’d just let him fuck me… and likely they did. It was just so transgressive and a mind-blowing turn-on. The truth is our sex life at home had become stale after nearly three years since we became a couple. Rather than feeling guilty driving home, feeling the cum in my panties turned me on even more. After all, Gerald had cum out in the alley, but I hadn’t. When I got home, I jumped Carl’s bones and we had the best sex we’d had in a really long time. Five minutes of getting drilled in the alley led to hours of great sex with Carl over the next few days. But I swore it would never happen again.”

Bonnie, without being asked said “But it did.”

“Yes, it did,” Isabel replied. “The next Monday, after class, Gerald asked me to follow his car, he said he had a surprise for me. I followed him to a motel just off the highway that led home. Of course, as soon as we pulled in, I knew what was going to happen. I followed him right to the room without a moment’s hesitation. That very first time Gerald said firmly that we had a strict time limit. We had to be in our cars no later than 10:15. And we were… that night and every night we went to that motel for the next fifteen months. Thirty to forty minutes of hard illicit sex in the motel with Gerald, again made me crazy for Carl. So, when I got home, I dragged him to the bed and we had amazing sex. From then until I finished my master’s degree, every Monday and Wednesday we were in class, I had sex in that motel. I didn’t love him, and while the truth is he was quite good in bed, I knew he didn’t love me. I knew, especially in time, that to him I was just a young available piece of ass.”

She paused and then went on. “At first for me, it was just the thrill of it. But in time, with the pattern that I always had an hour or more of sex with Carl when I got home, I began to think of sex with Gerald as foreplay for my husband. Gerald didn’t make any great effort to get me off, so I came home with a vagina full of semen and super turned on every time. From Gerald, I really did learn a lot of new sexual techniques and he was good at eating pussy… at least on those times when he was in the mood. Those twice-a-week meetings in the motel brought out a much more sexually assertive me. I began to tell Carl to do things, the things that Gerald did to me that I liked. So, as a direct result of my cheating, our sex life at home got better and better, which helped me rationalize keeping on with the affair.”

Carl cut in “Of course, it didn’t take long for me to realize that something was new. Not only did she come home from school hot and horny, but we started doing new things. She was way more assertive about what she wanted and over time she had me do her in more new ways than I’d even thought of before. I actually remember the night she came home after her first time in the motel. That is because after we’d had sex and I’d come; she went down on me to suck me hard again. She’d never done that before. She’d also never swallowed my semen before that day, but she went right down on my dick all covered with it. Once I was hard, she mounted me and we did it all over again. It was the first time a single instance of us having sex ever went on for over an hour.”

Isabel continued, “My program took two school years with summer classes in between. In that time sex at home had become amazing. I mean better than either of us thought it could be, yet, I also hated that I was cheating.” She looked back to Carl as if to say it was his turn to talk.

“For a long time, I was just in hog heaven. How could I complain that my formally rather conventional wife had become a wild thing in bed? We were doing it like six days a week, sometimes seven. And rarely did we go less than an hour… rather than the ten or fifteen minutes that we’d been doing for the prior couple of years. You see, while when I started dating Isabell, I was sure I was a man of the world, I was no such thing. I’d had sex dozens of times, though to be clear, it had always been quite subdued with steady girlfriends. Looking back, my repertoire was quite limited. The very idea of casual sex in the real world, as opposed to fiction and porn, was foreign to me but so was sex beyond a pretty limited number of things.”

Isabell interrupted, “Don’t believe him. He was a tender and loving partner from the very first. Yes, it is true he wasn’t very creative, but he wasn’t a three-minute fuck either… in college I had several of those. Even before I cheated on him, there were times when we would spoon or do it facing each other on our sides going on way longer than the fifteen minutes he says…. But to be honest he’s right, I don’t think we’d ever gone on more than perhaps just over half an hour before my affair. So, while it is true our sex life was limited and, in a rut, he wasn’t a dud in bed. But it is also true that his inexperience & limited sexual horizons meant for nearly an entire year he failed to see the reason that when I’d come home from class, I’d jump his bones. He never once seemed to notice that even as I took off my clothes that my panties were wet. Sometimes the white semen in them was plainly visible, even as they lay on the floor. Or that when I hopped on the bed and spread my legs, my vulva was already bright red from use. Day after day, especially in the first few months, the moment I was on my back with my thighs apart, I told him to fuck me hard right off. He never questioned why my vagina was totally lubricated and ready with no warm-up at all. The idea that I had been prepared in advance from a hard fucking half-an-hour before, or that I was filled with both my own fluids and semen was simply beyond his imagination. And when we kissed, I knew full well that some of the time my mouth tasted strongly of cum. I could taste it myself, especially on the days we didn’t go to a hotel, I’d often suck Gerald off in his car.”

Carl just nodded, “I just knew that when she got home from school, she’d want to have sex. I wasn’t going to complain about that. And yes, I did notice the white stuff that came out of her right when I began to stroke in her, and those nights when she had me go down on her first, rather than screw her, of course, I could taste it; but I thought it was just some woman thing. And I also noticed the taste in her mouth she sometimes had. It wasn’t bad, just odd. Though to be honest, I don’t know why I never realized that the taste on her pussy when she had me go down on her right when she got home and that occasional taste in her mouth were the same. But I’d never tasted semen, so how was I to know what it was?”

Bonnie couldn’t help but laugh at that. “You are right. How were you supposed to know what you were seeing and tasting was the residual cum left after Isabel had been fucking another man? That would take some specific knowledge and skill. When my husband and I were dating, he had been warned by other guys that if he kept going out with me, he was going to get sloppy seconds and cum kisses. He knew to look for it, though to be clear, he had already decided that if that was the price to date me, he was more than willing to pay it.” She looked at Carl, “I certainly doubt anyone gave you that same warning.”

He shook his head. “No, I had no idea. But the next fall, after she’d been doing it for a year, Isabel, in her own way tried to tip me off. She tried to force herself to confess she’d been cheating on me. She couldn’t just do it right out. So, she initiated that we start watching porn together. Sometimes she’d turn it on before sex, and sometimes she’d put it on while we were doing it. Now I’d seen porn of course, but it was what she selected for us to watch that was the warning.”

Isabel put in “He’s right. I didn’t like cheating but it was going so great for us. Well, I did like the sex, for several years after all this I tried to convince myself that the sex hadn’t been great, but it had been. Not fulfilling, but like a sugar rush, intense, fast, pleasurable but over as soon as it was over. I just didn’t know what to do. The concept of what is called negotiated non-monogamy, or ethical non-monogamy was simply beyond me. So, I wanted him to figure it out, and then he would make me stop. I don’t remember making a plan, but in the course of my second fall semester of grad school, I had us watch three different films about cheating wives who came home and gave their husbands sloppy seconds. But dear Carl didn’t catch on. I finally found a video where the leading guy knew to look for the signs his wife was having sex with other men. In several scenes, the dialogue explained how the leading man realized he was tasting cum in his wife’s mouth and vagina. Of course, since it was porn it always led to them having great sex… but of course, it was doing that for us too, even if he didn’t know it. But the scene that finally set off the light bulb in Carl’s brain was when the video showed a close-up of what it looked like as the husband’s dick displaced another man’s semen from inside of his wife. I’m sure that was the scene that finally got poor Carl to see the light.”

Carl picked back up. “She might have thought she was being obvious, but I didn’t get the message at first. I sort of thought she was doing role-play. You know, so we could fantasize that she was doing other men, then coming home to have sex with me. But, looking back, as liberal and open-minded as I thought we were, we… or at least I didn’t even have the language to discuss what she wanted to talk about.”

Isabel put her hand on his, “No, I didn’t have the language either. If I had would could have talked it through, but I didn’t. So, I used porn.”

Carl patted her hands, “It may have taken a couple of months and a lot of porn, but you are right; when I saw that guy’s penis pushing out the semen from his wife, it was exactly what I’d seen so many times over the prior year. But it wasn’t like what Isabel said, the light didn’t just come on, rather it started me thinking. Within a week, I’d put all the things together and it certainly appeared she’d been having sex after her classes. But that was just so difficult for me to imagine, but I had to find out. No, I didn’t just ask her if she was having an affair, that would have been too easy. Before I confronted her, I decided to do some experiments to determine if that was indeed semen in her vagina. You remember how I said that before all this she never swallowed my semen, well, by the time I started to see the light, she’d been bringing me off with her mouth and swallowing it regularly for a year. So I did my first experiment during Christmas break. After she’d sucked me off one time, I did something I’d never done before, I pulled her to my face and started kissing her really deep.”

Bonnie asked, “Were you looking to see what it tasted like to kiss her after she’d had cum in her mouth?”

“Yes, that is exactly what I was doing. Of course, I didn’t know all semen doesn’t taste the same. I just figured cum was cum.”

Isabel put in, “By then, I had actually begun to do it with another guy from my class at the motel because Gerald appeared to be tired of doing me twice a week, but that is a different story.”

Carl went on, “While it didn’t taste exactly the same, it was certainly in the same ballpark. And, surprise, surprise, she loved me kissing her like that after she’d given me a blow job.”

“I’d never had a guy do that after I’d sucked him off. And to be honest, while I‘d not sucked down Carl’s cum before that, I had done it before; both in high school and college. From the very first week, I’d gone to the motel, I was swallowing Gerald’s cum, so within a week I started doing that to Carl too. But in all those times in high school, or college or with Gerald, I’d never had a guy want to kiss me afterward. To me, him wanting to kiss me after I’d swallowed just felt so intimate and…” Isabel seemed to search for a word.”

“Appreciative,” Bonnie offered, “Or how about respectful.”

“Both words would describe it.” Isabel said, “In the eight years since then, he kisses me most of the time I bring him off with my mouth.”

Bonnie nodded, “I actually had a whole discussion with a group of high school girls about this very thing a few months ago. Well, I had several, and they universally agree that guys should kiss them after they suck them off.”

Isabel shook her head, “What I would give to be able to talk that candidly to the girls at my high school.”

Carl went back to his narrative, “Though I thought the taste in her mouth was similar to how she tasted some nights when she got home, I knew I needed to go to the next step to be sure. A few days later, after I’d ejaculated into Isabel, I slid down and put my mouth on her vulva, and ate her out, semen and all. It was really weird, and at first, it was hard for me to do it. I guess like most guys would, I initially had a homophobic reaction to tasting semen, even my own. Of course, the whole point was to find out if I’d been eating another guy’s stuff for the past year. But it was easier the second time. After the third or fourth time I’d done it, I realized I actually liked eating her out after I’d cum in her. A lot of that was because from the first, I could tell that she loved when I did it, so after that it became part of our lovemaking repertoire.”

Isabel jumped in “Of course what he didn’t yet comprehend was that getting my pussy eaten out after a hard fuck already was part of my sexual repertoire. Looking back, I’m embarrassed to think about how selfish I was in getting him to eat cum without his knowledge. I actually feel worse about that than having sex behind his back. By then, in those weeks before my second Christmas after starting my affair, I was coming home with a pussy full of cum three days a week, because after that Thanksgiving, I started doing it with a second guy from my class. When I’d started this, I had almost always wanted Carl to fuck me right off when I got home, but that summer and fall, increasingly I’d come home, spread my legs and ask him to eat me out before he put his dick in. Of course, he had no idea what he was really doing, but I did. That was wrong of me, but I liked it so much because getting eaten out by my husband was like a coda to the fucking I’d gotten in the motel. So, when he went down on me after sex that first time, I already had a taste for it. Like he said, he could tell right off how much I liked it, even if he didn’t yet realize why. Ever since then, it is a capstone for some of our best lovemaking sessions. When the kids leave us alone long enough, he eats me to orgasm one last time as the very last thing we do. So, as long as we have time, I always get the last thrill.”

Bonnie laughed, “I remember what it was like with kids the age of yours. Trust me It will get better. May I ask about how you started with a second guy from class?”

She seemed to think, then said “Yes, I guess I should have told you this already. You see, as we were into our second year together, our fifteen-person cohort was a pretty tight group. Those of us who met at the Dog Pound had actually become close friends, and we shared a lot about our lives on those Thursday nights. Everyone in that group of eight or nine knew all about my relationship with Gerald and what I did after class on Monday and Wednesdays. I knew a couple of the women thought he was taking advantage of me, but since by November it had been going on for a year, they just saw it as part of my life… as did I. The Monday after Thanksgiving break, I was feeling down because it was the first Monday night when we had a class that I’d not gone to the motel with Gerald in a full year. He’d missed a few Wednesdays in the past few months, but he’d never gone right home after class on Monday. I was concerned that he was losing interest in me. One of the guys in that group, William, agreed to go with me over to the Dog Pound to commiserate. When we got there, he told me that over the holiday, his girlfriend had dumped him. After my first beer, I just blurted out that Gerald had paid the owners of the motel to use our room on class nights until May, and that I had the key.”

In an aside Isabel said to Bonnie, “Here on the shore of Lake Superior, places like that motel sit nearly entirely empty from mid-September till mid-May. It was easy for Gerald to simply pay the Indian couple who owned the motel a lump sum for the use of the room anytime on Mondays through Thursdays, so we saved time by not going through check-in. Months back, Gerald had told me directly that it was fine with him if I brought someone else to the room when we weren’t using it. While I passed it off as a joke, I knew he meant it. By then I had begun to realize he thought of me as just a piece of ass, not even as a mistress. So, right in front of William, I pulled out the motel key and showed it to him. Starting that night, I began having sex with William too. That night was one of the very few times I stayed in the motel room past 10:15. I texted Carl that one of my classmates had a personal problem I was helping with, and the library was open till 11:00, so I’d be heading home then. It was true after a fashion.”

Carl said flatly, “In all this, that was one of the few times she’d openly tried to deceive me. That hurt more than the fact by then I suspected she was having an affair.”

Isabel nodded, “Yes, and I am very sorry for that.” Then back to Bonnie she went on “The next night, I made sure to tell Gerald that I’d had sex in our room with William. He was fine, even happy to hear it. Though I think he said something to William that I was never privy to. I suspect he laid down some ground rules for sharing me. So for the entire final semester, pretty much every Monday I was with Gerald, on Tuesday I was with William, and most Wednesdays I was with both of them. Having two men in bed was a totally new experience. It seemed to rejuvenate Gerald’s interest in me since it allowed us to do new things, though I couldn’t miss that Gerald always made sure that he was the alpha male, and he kept William in a subordinate role. I’d heard rumors that at his school district, he was a bully and enjoyed belittling people. It was only with William in the motel room with us did I see that in action. That annoyance was balanced by the amazing new experiences I was getting. As always, the 10:15 leave time meant that we never left fully sated. Which of course was why I always came home ready to jump on Carl; but that issue was compounded by having two men with me. Right up to May, we were trying out all the new possibilities. So, as I said, I was in that motel room bed for about forty-five minutes, three nights a week, then came home to Carl, so without a doubt, from December till May, I had more sex than I’d ever had in my life.”

Bonnie laughed, “I’m impressed. I take my cap off to you Isabel.”

She got a funny look and then made a half-bow. “And since William was there when the crew met at the Dog Pound on Thursdays, more often than not, I gave him a blow job in his truck before heading home. So, that last semester of grad school, nearly every night my vagina and/or mouth tasted of cum.”

Carl jumped back in, “So when she started back to class after Christmas, my experiment began in earnest. I used Friday, Saturday, and Sunday as my baseline samples to compare the tastes. After the first three days, I was fairly certain. By the end of the second week, there was no doubt. I knew for sure that my wife was having sex with someone from her class, and had been for a year.”

Bonnie quietly asked, “What did you do?”

“That was even a harder problem. Just like Isabel had discovered, her after-school sex had revolutionized our marriage. Our sex life had gone from mundane to fabulous, and I knew it was because of her affair. But, just like her, I couldn’t even conceive of simply saying what she was doing was OK; yet at the same time, I was really confused because I didn’t have the feelings of hurt and betrayal that I thought I should be having. I was fearful of what would happen when I forced open the can of worms, so I put off addressing it for months. But, finally, one night in March, after we’d had particularly good sex, I asked her when we were going to talk about the fact she’d been coming home with other men’s semen in her for over a year.”

Isabel put in “He said it so calmly, as if he were asking when we were going to talk about replacing the tires on my car. The way he brought it up told me a lot. For one thing, I knew right off this wasn’t something that was going to end our marriage. That had been my deepest fear. It also told me that he’d known for some time. It only took me about five seconds to think through the past few months and conclude that he’d known since around Christmas. I realized that he’d begun going down on me after sex and kissing me after I blew him as part of an experiment. Carl just thinks that way. Yet, he’d not stopped going down on me after he must have realized what was going on. He knew and yet he kept doing it anyway because I liked it so much. Dozens of times in the past few months, I’d asked myself why I made such a point to tell him how much I liked him eating me out right off when I got home. Yes, I was super sensitive down there after getting banged, and I almost always came really fast and hard, but was that it? I knew I wasn’t trying to humiliate Carl, in fact in my mind, it was the opposite, it was him joining in with what I was doing in that motel room. In my fantasy, by going down on me he was part. But suddenly I realized he had known, at least since Christmas. He had known what he was doing, and yet kept doing it, because I wanted him to. It recast it from a fantasy into a profoundly loving and intimate act that seemed impregnated with his love and forgiveness of my transgressions.”

Bonnie completely understood. She thought about telling her story of Cooper doing the same thing, but she didn’t. Rather she just asked, “So? What happened?”

“We talked nearly all night. I told him everything, and I mean everything. I made it clear to him that while the first time I’d been a little drunk, I’d kept doing it mostly because of how great it made the sex with him when I got home. But I told him I knew it was not something I should keep doing.”

Carl put in “And I confessed that for some reason, I didn’t feel the way I was sure that I should feel about her having sex with two other men. I was sure my lack of jealousy, anger, and hurt was due to some emotional deficiency on my part. I found myself trying to assure her that I really did love her, even if I didn’t react the way I thought I should and she expected me to.”

“Yes, it was very odd,” she responded. “While I was trying to convince him I didn’t love him any less because I’d been having sex with Gerald and William; he was trying to convince me he didn’t love me any less because he wasn’t hurt or angry. As someone trained in counseling, I should have seen right off that we were good, and by the time we were done, we’d gotten to that point. But it took hours of talking.”

Carl went on “I told her that I’d known for months and had simply put off bringing it up out of fear it would harm our relationship, as I thought it should. Just like her, I too had a very conventional view about marriage and said she could not keep on doing what she’d been doing even though we both agreed it had improved our marriage.”

Isabel picked up, “By then I also had a concern that if I simply dumped Gerald, he might retaliate in some way. After all, an Assistant Superintendent could easily destroy the career of a provisional guidance counselor, and by then I knew he really was the kind of person who would do just that.”

Carl put in “I’d not even considered that issue until she brought it up. But she had.”

“In the end, we put off making a decision. The next day, before I left for my evening class, Carl suggested that until we come up with a plan, we should just act as if we’d never had that talk at all. In that way, he indirectly told me it was all right to go to the motel after class as usual. From that day until Spring Break, we avoided a decision and continued as we had. The only difference was each night when I got home, I told him all that I’d done that night at the motel while we were having sex. We both loved that part.”

Carl nodded, “Yea, we did.”

Isabel went on “Our final solution was to let it die a natural death, giving nobody any clue that he’d ever known what I was doing. After I graduated, I never talked to Gerald again. William works at a school about an hour from mine and I see him at regional trainings a couple of times a year. We are good friends as I am with the others from our cohort, but we simply pretend the sex part never happened. In the eight years since then, I’ve never had sex outside of our marriage with anyone. Though that very first night I told Carl that should he find himself in the same spot as me, he had my permission to do the same as I did. After all, what is good for the goose is good for the gander.”

Bonnie nodded saying, “Yes, it is.” Then she asked Carl, “Did you?”

“That summer I had sex with another woman one time, but that is it.”

Isabel chimed in, “You know I said we’ve gone nude with others into the sauna. Well, on our second trip to Norway, after I graduated, a gorgeous woman couldn’t keep her eyes off him as we were all naked in that little room. Carl really is impressive in the buff. I could tell she had his eye too, so I encouraged it, and they went to her room afterward.”

Bonnie asked without thinking, “And she didn’t invite you to join them?

Isabel smiled, “Oh, she did. And I wanted to go with them… a lot. But for me offering her my husband while I didn’t go was a sort of penance for me. But, yes, I really wanted to go with them. I’ve never been with a woman like that, and I’ve fantasized about it for years, but giving up the opportunity was my punishment.”

Carl nodded, “The truth is that I only had sex with her because I knew Isabel wanted to punish herself and wouldn’t let it go until I did. OK, I’ll admit, the Norwegian woman was very pretty and the sex was nothing short of amazing. But it would have been so much better had Isabel been with us. I told Isabel all about it, and well that was that. We have been monogamous ever since… nine years now.”

Bonnie was sure all that was really just a preamble to the real question they’d come to her room to ask. And, she was right.

Isabel followed up her story with, “Since then, we have both read a lot on ethical non-monogamy. We’ve followed blogs and even had some online interactions with some people who claim they have open marriages, but you know how the internet is. Then we found your foundation’s website, we read all the things your husband and the others have written, and now we have met you.”

Bonnie put her hand out and took Isabel’s. “Yes. I would be happy to answer all your questions, not just tonight, but as you think about all this going forward. And don’t think anything of my earlier quip about us having sex. While you are a lovely couple, it would be wrong of me to make you think that my advice is contingent on the three of us having a romp tonight.”

In a burst of enthusiasm that surprised Bonnie, and apparently surprised her husband, Isabel said “Oh, but we want to have sex with you… I mean if you are interested.” Then she appeared as though she’d said way too much and looked over to her husband, then just above a whisper asked, “We do, don’t we?”

It took him a moment to catch up with what was clearly something they had not actually discussed. Then after glancing a look at Bonnie, he said “Of course we do.”

Isabel turned back to Bonnie, “If you are interested that is.”

Bonnie smiled and said, “Of course I am.” Then she sat up and said “So, with that settled, how’s this for a plan? I will answer as many questions as I can until 11:30, then we will have sex. You can stay the night if you wish, or go back to your room when you get tired. I’ve found morning sex with lovely couples like you is really quite nice. But you can decide that later.”

Just at that moment the room service finally appeared. As Bonnie rose to answer the door, Isabel said, “I think it is a great plan. Though I’ll confess I’m more than a little surprised it has happened just this fast and easy after all the years Carl and I have talked about it.”

After she’d tipped the Room Service waiter, Bonnie said “Sometimes, perhaps many times, this is how it works. You hope and plan and dream for months and years, then it seems it all happens so suddenly. But in fact, all that hoping and planning is part of the process.”

As Bonnie proposed, they talked about the practical side of negotiated non-monogamy, and about raising children in a home where nudity and sex are simply a part of life for over an hour. They talked about working with teens and Bonnie opened up the Euro-Club website for Isabel. Just breezing through all the material the girls had posted in the past few months generated far more questions than could be answered before 11:30. At exactly that time, Bonnie without a comment, stood up and pulled her sweater over her head, and slid her pants and panties to the ground. Isabel and Carl just sat catatonic.

Standing in only her yellow/gold open-cup bra and red socks, she reached out to Isabel, “Would you like me to help undress you?”

Isabel slowly nodded and stood.

Before she began, Bonnie asked, “You said earlier that you’ve never been with a woman. Have you done anything with girls before?”

“In college, I made out with a couple of girls at parties and things, and I even sucked one of their tits; but I’ve never actually been naked in bed with a female.”

Bonnie helped her out of her jacket, “Well I know I would like to make love to you and to Carl tonight.” She began to unbutton Isabel’s white blouse. “If you would like, I will lead. But tell me if you want me to stop. I tell the teenagers I work with that they should only have sex when both their mind and their body say Yes, Yes, Yes.” As she slipped the blouse off, Bonnie brought her face very close to Isabel’s. “What does your mind and body say right now?”

In a barely audible breathy voice, she replied, “Yes. God, yes. Please yes.”

Bonnie put her lips to the younger woman’s. She responded immediately. The intensity of the sexual desire Isabel showed truly surprised her. It was Isabel who reached back and unclasped her own bra. Bonnie thought about removing her open-cup bra, but decided that she liked the look. She only wished she had on the matching garter and stockings… which made her think of the red socks she was wearing. She took them off.

Standing together, holding Isabel with her nipples pressed just above the smaller woman’s bare breasts, Bonnie found herself enveloping her as they kissed. Isabel smelled and tasted good as Bonnie moved her kisses from her mouth to her neck, shoulders, and upper chest. Her skin had a scent and taste of vanilla and jasmine with some other woody elements. She liked it a lot. She suspected it came from bathing in some sort of oil before getting dressed to come to the conference. There was no question that the aroma and taste of her skin heightened the moment. Since Isabel was smaller than Bonnie in nearly every respect, it was very easy to guide her to the bed to help her out of her remaining clothes.

Later, after they had been touching, licking, and kissing each other’s bodies for some time, Bonnie whispered to Isabel, “You might want to invite Carl to get undressed and get on the bed with us. We might not be ready for dick yet, but having him in the bed will make him feel part, and it will give us additional sensual possibilities.”

As Carl got undressed, Bonnie began to systematically move her licks and kisses down Isabel’s body. By the time he crawled onto the bed between his wife and the wall, Bonnie was between Isabel’s legs, kissing her inner thighs, just below the crease of her mound of Venus. After slowly dragging her tongue up the left side of Isabel’s labia, she looked up to Carl. Her first thought was, “Damn, she was right, he does look good in the nude.” Putting that thought aside she told him, “There is nothing like kissing your spouse while someone else gives him or her oral sex. And since I plan on being down here for a while, you will have plenty of time to enjoy one another’s company.”

And she did take her time. Time enough to bring Isabel off thrice as she and her husband touched, kissed, and whispered to each other. Bonnie felt very successful in that while she was giving direct stimulation to Isabel’s genitals, the real moment was between Isabel and Carl. When it was clear she’d had enough, Bonnie slid up to lay beside Isabel. She didn’t say anything but waited for them to give a reaction.

It took several minutes, but finally, Isabel said, “That was amazing. By inviting Carl to be with me like that, it changed the way I’d expected my first time with a woman to be. Better, he made it better than it would have been without him.” They lay another minute or two, then Isabel said “I really want to go down on you before we finish tonight, and I want to see you and Carl make love; but would it be too much to ask for you to do that to Carl while he and I continue to have our little time up here?”

Bonnie leaned over to kiss Isabel. “Of course, it wouldn’t. I’m not doing this for me, I’m doing this to show you how having someone else in your bed can bring you two closer. I absolutely love to hold and kiss my husband while another woman is sucking him off. So, I get it. The only question is, do you want me to hold back, or do you want the chance to taste your husband’s cum in my mouth?”

With obvious eagerness, she replied, “Oh make him cum. I have no doubt at all that I… we, will be able to get him hard again in no time. And yes, I do want to kiss you after he does. It’s my turn for that.”

Bonnie tried to take her time, but she was not surprised that after only about five minutes, her mouth was full of semen. Bonnie made a point not to fully swallow it all, to ensure she could share with Isabel. She’d learned that little trick from Heather who said she regularly did it with the LeMarco’s. Isabel was thrilled to taste her husband in Bonnie’s mouth.

Before they took a break, Isabel got her chance to taste pussy for the first time. What she lacked in experience she more than made up in enthusiasm. For a good half an hour they relaxed going back to finish off the wine and finger food. By the time they’d returned to the bed, Isabel and Carl had crossed the threshold and were clearly quite comfortable with the idea they had finally, after close to ten years of wanting to do so, had embraced that non-monogamy can be a legitimate model for their marriage. Bonnie suspected they had known deep down from the very first night they’d talked about it that it was right for them; but it had taken them all those years to accept that fact.

Together, Bonnie and Isabel used their mouths to bring Carl back to full staff. She knew couples always liked doing that and she liked joining a wife in giving her husband head. In the past three months, she’d been with almost two dozen married couples and learned a lot about how to act as an enhancement to their sexual relationships. The majority of those couples had been the short hot fucks in swing club playrooms that she timed to last about half an hour. However, she’d had a total of eight couples spend part or all of the night with her in her room. She found those times much more enjoyable… but that is not to say she didn’t have some eye-rolling orgasms in the club playrooms while people looked in on the action from the hallway.

There was no question that for casual sex on the road, it was more pleasant, more fulfilling, and easier to join a married couple than a single (male or female). Carl and Isabel were no exception.

When it came time for Bonnie to finally mount Carl, it was well over an hour since she’d taken off her sweater. She thought the pacing had been nearly perfect, it was not too early or too late to start fucking Carl.

Once he was hard, Bonnie let them know that inside of their circle of friends they did not use condoms, but she’d promised everyone she would always use them for vaginal or anal sex on the road. So, with a condom on Carl’s erection, Bonnie got to her knees over his prone body. “Now Isabel, If you can sit on your husband’s chest.”

She did so.

“And hold his penis so you can guide it in, but leave your hand between us even after he is in me. I think you will enjoy actually feeling our bodies connecting. That way we are all part of this special moment. This is something you will want to remember.”

She nodded, and said “Yes I will,” as she reached down between Bonnie’s legs to guide her husband’s penis between the descending labial lips. Bonnie felt Isabel use one hand to guide his penis and the other to spread her lips as she lowered herself down. With Isabell’s help, the head of Carl’s penis easily slid through the gate as she lowered her body onto him. As she’d hoped, she came to rest on Isabel’s upturned hand rather than Carl’s pubic bone. She looked right into Isabel’s eyes, “Well? Do you feel it?”

She smiled, “Yes, I do. My husband’s cock is inside of an amazingly beautiful and sexy woman. And I can feel everything.”

“Good.” Bonnie slowly rocked up so half his penis came out again. By the fourth cycle, she knew full well the shaft was fully coated in her lubricants, and Isabel’s fingers were quite wet. Though she knew from firsthand experience how sexy it was to feel a man’s penis going in and out with her hand like that, she thought it would help for Isabel to verbalize it. “Well? How does it feel for your husband to have sex with another woman?”

With her hand sandwiched between Bonnie’s stretched-open labial lips and her husband’s engorged cock, Isabel smiled and said, “This is wonderful. Feeling him going into you like this… I’d imagined the moment we first shared a woman a thousand times; but I’d never thought of it like this, with me feeling it actually happening. Thank you, Bonnie, for guiding us to this perfect moment.”

Just as they turned their heads to begin kissing again… Bonnie’s cell phone went off. The kiss began anyway, but as her tongue entered Isabel’s mouth, she processed that it was Cooper’s ringtone. She broke the kiss, her lips an inch from Isabel’s she said, “I’m so sorry, that is my husband. Could you get it for me?”

Her phone was in her briefcase on the coffee table, so Isabel had to dismount her husband to pick it up and hand it to Bonnie who had settled down all the way on Carl. Even as she took the phone with one hand, she motioned for Isabell to return to sitting on Carl’s chest.”

“Hey, sweety,” she said after swiping to receive the call.

Cooper launched right into talking about what had happened at Sherry’s house with Maggie LaCroix and the others. She could tell he’d had a great night and was very excited. When he paused to take a breath she said, “Sweety, I’m with a very lovely couple right now. They have been married twelve years and this is the first time they have ever had another woman in their bed before, and they are a little nervous. So could you tell me the rest when I get home tomorrow?”

After he’d said that he understood and said, “I love you,” she replied, “I love you too,” before ending the call and dropping the phone onto the bed beside her.

Isabel’s eyes were wide, “That is so amazing that you could just tell your husband you are having sex with us like it’s the most natural thing in the world for you to be doing.”

Bonnie leaned forward and kissed Isabel, “It is the most natural thing in the world for me to be doing. That is the point. So, telling my husband that I am currently making love with you and Carl is totally and completely natural.” Isabel only had time to nod before Bonnie pulled her tight to begin kissing her in earnest as she rode Carl.

It was past two when the three of them lay exhausted in the bed. Bonnie didn’t think it could have gone any better. Both Isabel and Carl thanked her profusely and she in turn thanked them for allowing her to join in their love. It was as if they had not considered how much Bonnie would get out of participating in their relationship for a night.

Isabel told Bonnie, “I guess there was so much I hadn’t expected about tonight. The truth is before we talked to you, before we left home this morning, doing this with you was a fantasy for both of us; but we actually didn’t dream it could come true. I still can’t believe we actually did it. And, the reality, all the things you led us to do that we had never even dreamed of doing made it infinitely better than any of the fantasies we’d had over the years about having a threesome.”

Bonnie felt a deep sense of accomplishment. Even more, the words came as a confirmation that the choices she’d been making for the past years were the right ones. Isabel’s’ words opened the door for her to offer the couple something tangible to take home to remind them that their dream really had come true.

When in September she had decided to put her entire self out on the line for the FFF cause, she had consciously decided that having sex at the swing clubs in which she presented would make her more effective. In doing so, she’d crossed the Rubicon, making her body part of the message. That first night in a swing club where she’d picked out a couple to take to a playroom, after they’d had half an hour of sex, she’d made an offer to the couple. “If you like, you can use your phone to take a selfie of the three of us as a memory of the night.” She’d actually gotten the idea from Misty who made a habit of getting after-sex photos with her playmates to post on her bulletin board.

Since September, a second bulletin board was now in the upstairs hallway for photos of Misty’s newest playmates. The couple at the swing club had appreciated Bonnie’s offer and they made a series of selfies of the three of them laying naked in the bed. Afterward, the husband asked if he could take several pics of just his wife and Bonnie, which Bonnie gladly permitted. Though she didn’t demand they do so, she let them know she’d love a copy of any of the pics they were willing to share with her. This interaction became the pattern for all of the couples she asked to join her while on the road. Of the twenty-three couples with whom she’d had sex while representing the FFF from mid-September to mid-December, all but two took her up on her offer. Of those, over half sent her one or more of the pics. As such, three months into her new job, she already had a collection of post-coital photos of her with fourteen different couples. Isabel and Carl made fifteen.

When the little picture session morphed into photos of Bonnie and Isabel making out with intensity, it soon progressed into a third round of sex before they dressed and left for their room. Though she’d offered, Isabel and Carl didn’t stay the night, which was just as well since Bonnie had to be clean, coiffed, and dressed before 9:30. It had been nearly 3:00 AM when Bonnie set her phone alarm.


When she crawled out of bed the next morning, Bonnie knew she needed to be down to the speaker’s room no later than 9:30, but still she was not rushed. She called Cooper as she got dressed. He was already up and driving his car toward Macon when she called. He was on his way to check on one of his independent architecture projects. It wasn’t a large one, but it had afforded him a good deal of creativity. He quipped, “It was really strange waking up without a woman in bed with me. I’ve become quite spoiled.”

“You are indeed very spoiled, Cooper Campbell. And it’s my fault,” she agreed before asking for a full report on his eventful night. As he spoke Bonnie recalled how she’d met Magnolia LaCroix at several social functions over the past decade or so. She recalled the woman to be gracious and much more pleasant than most of the Handcock County society mavens. Once, she, Marcy and Magnolia had talked for a good half an hour, effectively hiding out in a back room from the stuffy event. And of course, from her first year in Sparta, she’d heard all about Ms. LaCroix’s Playboy appearance, and that she had been a minor player on the TV show Baywatch as well as a few movies… all which included nudity. To be fair, such things easily made her the most famous person in the history of Handcock County. She also knew all about her dear husband’s crush on the local sex symbol which dated back to when he was their son’s age. She thought it was cute and sort of funny.

Cooper told her about Sherry’s & Maggie’s plan to put on a series of small social gatherings, soirees, that would effectively be mini-sex parties, to bring in those social & financial leaders who were also sexual libertines. In doing so, he mentioned that Slosh and Mike had agreed to be one of the core couples in that project, going to approximately one event a month. In passing, Cooper told her, “From what I could gather from the way she and Sherry talked, Magnolia and Marcy, must have been rather close friends for decades. I had no idea.”

Memories and connections began to stir in Bonnie’s head. Every time she’d talked to Magnolia beyond basic pleasantries, Marcy was always there. She recalled that she’d realized right off that it had appeared to her that the two women knew each other better than from the normal social contacts of the county’s elites. Then, suddenly, parts of a conversation at a function a couple of years ago came into focus. Marcy and Magnolia had been talking about some past event, but they had used the kind of coded language that was so common in their social circles. They had laughed about a shared story that they both fully understood, but made no sense to Bonnie. Then, she recalled one detail, one word, something she’d long forgotten. While at the time it didn’t mean anything, but now it all clicked. Magnolia and Marcy had talked in hushed tones about the Blue Globe. Bonnie had just passed it off as something or someplace they both used to go that she’d not been part of, so she forgot about it; just like she did with most of what was said at those events. Suddenly, she saw it. Magnolia knew all about Slosh! Even more, she had known since before Marcy moved to Sparta. Of course! Who else in Sparta would have gone to a place like the Blue Globe but the notorious Magnolia LaCroix?

With her mind suddenly preoccupied, Bonnie missed a good five minutes of what Cooper said as she was getting ready. She wasn’t worried she would miss anything, given the thrill Cooper had in having sex with his fantasy woman, she’d hear it all again later. What filled Bonnie’s mind was that all this time, Slosh, Sherry, and Magnolia clearly had a relationship that had been kept totally and completely secret. Had Sherry known all about Slosh for years too? If what she thought Cooper said about the nature of Sherry & Magnolia’s secret relationship was what it seemed to be, surely, she had. So many secrets. Yet, Bonnie was not the least bit surprised. She’d learned years ago that secrets were the lifeblood of the rural social elites. Now, with that background, the fact Magnolia, Sherry, and Slosh were heading up a plan to ensnare Handcock County’s closeted libertines in defense of Bonnie and her family made perfect sense. How could she be resentful of that?

She was only brought back to his narrative when her husband began to tell her about how Margo LeCroix and the local Christian right were organizing to oppose them… to oppose her family in particular. “Would you believe that you and I are such a threat to the Moral Majority types that they are organizing to attack us? Perhaps that is a sign that we are having more influence than we thought.” Bonnie wasn’t sure what she thought of that. She really didn’t want to create a public fight in her backyard, but perhaps it was inevitable. Cooper ended the conversation by repeating that he would tell her all about it later, but it was beginning to rain as he was driving, so he needed to hang up.

As she’d been listening to her husband on the speakerphone, Bonnie had been getting dressed for her big day. She’d decided to upgrade her wardrobe to fit her new role so she had bought a new smart-looking charcoal-colored wool skirt suit. Even though she'd had it hemmed several inches shorter than it was designed to be, it was far more conservative than the stuff she'd been wearing for the past few months when representing the FFF. She had brought with her two blouses because she had not been sure what she would want once she arrived. One blouse was a solid white silk that was only slightly sheer. The other was white microfiber with alternating opaque and fully sheer stripes. She tried on both with the jacket before deciding the silk one was more appropriate for this event. When she’d left the house, she had intended not to wear a bra at all with the solid blouse, but with the suit coat on she didn't like the sloppy way going braless looked. While Misty could get away with the braless look anytime she wanted, her mother was simply too busty and too… mature for that. She put on the open-front bra she’d worn under her sweater the day before, but the color showed right through the white silk.

Before leaving home, she had, at the last moment, tossed the white quarter-cup bra she'd bought at the Macon sex shop into her bag. She’d only worn it once or twice since that day. After all, she’d all but abandoned bras during the summer and she wore nothing at all under the mini-dresses she’d been wearing to the swing clubs. But putting it on she got the look she was seeking. She liked the way the top half of her breasts could move under the feather-light material, but yet give her the lift she wanted under the wool jacket. She moved in front of the mirror. Though the silk was only the slightest bit sheer, it showed the shape of her breasts as it flowed over them. Sure, the blouse would mostly be covered by the jacket, but still, it felt sexy. She realized it was quite similar to Slosh’s Blue Globe emcee outfit. Had that been deliberate? She didn’t know. Finally, she donned the suit coat & briefcase and headed out.

Bonnie was surprised the hotel’s convention space appeared to be quite filled with delegates. She found Gayle and asked how many people were present. Gayle told her the final total was six-hundred sixty-four. She had brought three hundred FFF brochures and half that many copies of a hand-out she had prepared just for this convention.

“I was told to prepare for up to seventy-five people in each session.”

“Right, that is what we told you,” Gayle answered. “However, because in the last few days, there has been a great deal of interest in your two presentations, I have moved you to Ballroom B. The hotel says your multi-media is set up and all you have to do is hook up your laptop when the first speaker is finished.”

Bonnie thanked her and headed to Ballroom B. She arrived just as the first lecture was letting out. The room was without a doubt the largest in which she had ever spoken. A wave of butterflies tickled her stomach. She tried to allay the nervousness as she hooked up her laptop. She had gone over the new lecture several times on the long trip but this would be her first public go-through.

By the time she had gotten the laptop hooked up and the title slide cued the room was already half full. The butterflies resumed. To calm herself she walked over to the front row to meet a few of the delegates.

“Hi, I’m Bonnie Campbell with the Final Freedom Foundation,” she said extending a hand to a serious-looking bearded man in the front row.

Returning her smile, he reached and shook her hand “I’m Clyde Jablonski, I teach poly-sci and philosophy at Eau Clair University in Wisconsin. I’m looking forward to your talk.”

“Wonderful. Have you heard of our work?”

“I read a mention of your organization in an article by Amy Douglass a month or two ago. When I saw the organization would have a representative here, I wanted to hear more about what you are trying to accomplish.”

“Well, I hope I generate some thoughts that might be discussed in some classrooms next week.”

“That’s why I’m here” he cheerfully answered.

She followed up with a question she’d been wondering. “So are many of the delegates here from academia?”

“A fair percentage, I’d say over half.”

“What other professions are represented?” she followed-up.

“Oh, in past years there have been a fair many political activist, representatives from a number of progressive, liberal and libertarian publications and a surprising number of people in fields that have no direct baring on the topics but they are interested in new ideas.”

“Thanks for the information; it helps to know to whom I’m speaking,” she said before moving off to meet a few more people. She was speaking to a psychologist from St. Paul when Gayle asked everyone to find a seat so the session could get started.

A few moments later, Gayle moved to the microphone to introduce Bonnie. “Our speaker in this session is Bonnie Campbell from the Final Freedom Foundation based in Augusta, Georgia. Some of you may have read about this organization and its campaign for sexual liberation in America. I have had several talks with Dr. Amy Douglass, the executive director of the FFF, and I think you will all find this talk very provocative. Bonnie is the Director of Outreach for the FFF. We had a nice talk when I brought her from the airport and I look forward to hearing her speak. Let’s give a warm welcome, because I know she thinks she’ll never be warm in Minnesota, to Bonnie Campbell.

Polite applause followed.

Bonnie rose and surveyed the room, not completely full but she estimated well over the one-hundred-fifty people for which she had brought hand-outs. That was very good. She guessed it to be close to two hundred. It was easily many times the size of the crowd she normally had. Now, she just hoped the new talk would flow well so she had some people to come to the next session.

“Thank you, Gayle. I’m glad to be here, though I did think I might freeze solid out on the tarmac last night” she opened. She was comforted when that got a laugh from the audience. A good sign; her nerves calmed.

“As Gayle just said I am the Director of Outreach for the Final Freedom Foundation.” She motioned to the FFF logo on the screen behind her. “The FFF is a foundation dedicated to supporting local and national efforts to promote freedom of sexual expression in the United States. We are not organized to be a direct activist organization ourselves, but our goal is to support and promote those who are doing so with both grants and support materials. A few months ago we also founded a complimentary Final Freedom Society for direct action, but the plan is to spin it off as an independent group once it is self-supporting. The FFF is unapologetically of the belief that free and open sexual expression is as much a right as a free and open press or the right to have free and open religion or even to freely and openly speak of your ideas.”

She cued the first slide for the new presentation. Unlike the main presentation with its stream of pictures, for today, this one had as many text slides as images of art to go along with the outline. The plan was to use image slides for this lecture as well, but time had run out on their preparations.

“In my next session I will talk specifically about the suppression of sexual expression in US history, but this morning I will be addressing how globally that sexual oppression throughout the ages has been the handmaiden of political oppression, exclusive of the United States which is addressed in my other presentation.” And off she went citing cultures throughout the last three millennia and how in each the rulers used the control of sexual expression to control people’s behavior and even thoughts.

Since it was her first time with this material, she stuck to her notes far more than she did in her primary presentation. She was pleased that she was still able to keep the audience with her. When she realized she had not paced well and would have to cut the lecture short, she paused to say “I’m sorry, this is the first time I have given this presentation, so if it seemed a bit rough, I apologize. I see I have less than five minutes left, so rather than rushing through thirty minutes of material, I’ll just promise to put it on the FFF website for you. I can assure you the next presentation is much better, and hope you’ll give me a second chance after lunch.”

With that she cut to the conclusion and wrapped up, mortified that she had blown her very first presentation to a large audience. She wished there was a back way out so she could avoid everyone.

The professor from Eau Clair University in Wisconsin was the first to approach her. “Very interesting take on history. It is almost like a modern look at many of the things that Foucault said.”

“I will admit, I only read his books fter I became involved with the FFF,” Bonnie replied. “But yes, his History of Sexuality series was an important source in developing this presentation, though anytime I cite him on political theory it is with a big caveat. So was my talk interesting good, or interesting bad?” she asked.

“Interesting, interesting, neither good nor bad just interesting,” he said staring intently in her eyes.

Not feeling any better about herself she said sourly “I’m sorry it was not my best presentation; I will do better next time.”

“Oh, your presentation was fine” he said, looking genuinely surprised at her evident self-reproach. “It was actually far better than we usually get at this meeting. You should have been in my first session; you were Oprah Winfrey compared to him. I meant your content, it was taking a rather extreme position, I’m not sure I can buy into it all.”

She started to talk but he cut her off “Now, I don’t think I disagree with the overall thrust, and it will give me something new to talk to my classes about.”

Feeling much relieved, she said, “Good, that was my intent; getting people thinking.”

She put her notes back into the black binder in which she carried them and made to leave, but the man persisted.

“Do you really believe the government should not have a say in what is done sexually, even in public?”

She looked back at him “Of course. Does the government have a right to tell you how to wear your beard, or what color to paint your car? Freedom of expression cannot be denied just because some people don’t want to see it expressed.” She didn’t mean to sound combative so she added “I’m not saying we should have the right to harm others with our freedom, like shout fire in a theater, but I would suggest that the constitution does not enshrine the right for people to be free from anything they might find offensive. Sure some, and where I live most, people would be offended if I had sex with my husband in my front yard, but does that mean they have the right to forbid me to do so? I don’t think so.”

She could tell she scored a point and he smiled “I hear you, but I just am saying I need some time to think this through.

She noticed that he was not bad looking, handsome even. He was on the short side, maybe 5’ 7” but cute. And his eyes were an intense shade of blue. She moved toward the back of the room and the doorway. He began to follow but Gayle approached and he turned away.

“That was great!” she said enthusiastically.

“I don’t know” Bonnie responded with much less enthusiasm.

“Really, it was very thought-provoking. I’m so glad you came.”

Feeling much better Bonnie followed her to the speakers table in the adjacent banquet room for lunch.

During the meal, she was annoyed at how most of the other presenters seemed so full of themselves. Bonnie was grateful when she was, soon after eating, able to excuse herself pretending that she had to prepare her lecture. She in fact slipped up to her room and rested in her bed for an hour before going back down for her second session.

The assigned room for her second presentation was filled when she arrived and the hotel staff was busy bringing in more chairs. She must not have done as poorly as she had thought, it was clear they were expecting a large crowd. Entering what was labeled Ballroom A, the space was big enough to make her feel small. The larger ballroom had a similar center section as the room she’d been in before, with a little more than a hundred seats, but there were also two side sections that must double the prior room’s total capacity. By the time she began, she was sure there were twice the people as were in the first session, and full of Ph.D.’s to boot. Her apprehension did not last long as she clicked on the first slide and moved into her lecture. As she progressed, she was pleased that the audience was right with her. She soon found that the size of the audience actually energized and empowered her; this would be one of her best presentations yet.

Halfway through she became warm and removed her jacket. She knew her blouse was not actually see-through, but it was somewhat sheer. Since white bras always showed through thin white tops, she was sure those with sharp eyes could tell that her breasts were supported, but not covered by the white lace. What was more, since the bra gave her lift but no upper support, she jiggled as she moved. The removal of her suit coat surely had transformed the conservative look to the audience, but she suspected, other than those in the front rows, no one would notice anything unusual. Even still, before she was finished speaking, she had decided that she would put together other similar ensembles for future professional-type events. She would adopt Slosh’s stage look after all.

As she wrapped up, she was feeling very successful. She was sure the presentation had been well received by the vast majority of the people in the room. The lecture's conclusion photos brought the expected shock to many faces. When she shut off the computer and thanked the audience for coming there was only a momentary hush before a lively applause filled the room.

As she gathered up her notes, she could not help feeling very good about herself as the applause continued. Gayle came to the lectern and addressed the audience, “I think we will all agree that was a slide show we will not forget. Thank you Bonnie for that amazing presentation. And thank you for your courage to put your actions behind your stated beliefs. That sadly is all too rare.” She then told the assembled people. “I’m sure many of you have questions for her, so come to the Panel Discussion in the Grand Ballroom at 4:00. As soon as Gayle dismissed the group Bonnie was surrounded by people wanting to meet her.

“That was so bold.”

“Simply amazing.”

“How did you have the nerve to use pictures of yourself?”

“Congratulations on a great presentation.”

“Could you speak to my graduate classes?”

And so the comments and questions went. She felt a bit befuddled but very pleased. She did her best to be polite and to answer as many questions as possible but it was all such a blur. After some time, Gayle came to her rescue and told the group they would need to save their questions for the Panel Discussion and to let Bonnie catch her breath before the next session started.

“Thanks, I felt like I was being mobbed,” Bonnie said quietly as the room emptied.

“No problem, and besides how was I going to get to talk to you if they didn’t leave?”

Gail helped Bonnie pack up her notes and the laptop; there were none of the handouts or brochures left.

“That really was quite a presentation, I’ve seen a lot in this business but I can assure you no one has ever seen what you presented. So many people come and talk about what should be done, but damn, you showed pictures of you doing what you say – with what? Four different people? That is putting feet, or should I say your whole body, in action to prove you mean what you say.”

Bonnie wasn’t sure what to say so she just smiled.

Gayle went on “You probably don’t know what a shock your presentation was to this group. See they nearly all fancy themselves to be free and open thinkers, but I would dare say there were more than a few blushing faces.”

“Oh, is that bad?”

“No, it’s just that it reminded some of them that it is so easy for them to spin their platitudes about how the world should be; but you rubbed it in their faces that there is an enormous difference between talking about making a better world and putting yourself out on a limb to make one.”

Bonnie thought she seemed to be talking in circles, but she knew what the woman was getting at.

Gayle went on, “and well, I guess what I really wanted to say is that I admire you for doing that. I remember when I was an undergraduate I had the courage to just do what I thought was right and hang the consequences. Then as I became a Graduate Assistant, then went out into the job market I started self-censoring. I worried about how my words and actions would impact my career more than how they would impact the world. But here you, a woman, not just any woman but a mother and wife, from the Bible belt no less, and you have as part of your lecture photos of yourself nude, not just nude but having sex.” Her words got faster as she spoke “I just, I just, as a fellow woman want to thank you for not being ashamed of what you believe and putting it right out front. This is what we need now. This is the kind of courage and leadership we need from women.”

Bonnie still wasn’t sure what she ultimately wanted to say, clearly, she meant to say something to her but Bonnie wasn’t quite sure what it was. It was getting a bit embarrassing so she put on her jacket and then excused herself to go to the lady’s room before the upcoming Panel Discussion.

The Grand Ballroom was no grander than Ballroom B or C; bigger yes, grander no. She looked across the "ballroom." She laughed to herself at how pretentious it was to call this meeting space a grand ballroom since it looked more like a large cafeteria dining room than what she imagined a grand ballroom to be. At the far end of the room, there was a raised platform with a table, microphones, and four chairs facing the audience. To the right was a lectern behind which, was the man that Bonnie had seen Gayle with at lunch.

The man, seeing Bonnie, came down the center aisle to greet her.

“Hello, I’m Dr. Gustine, I hear I missed quite a presentation. I’m sorry but I was speaking in another room. You’ll have to give me the short version over dinner tonight.”

He motioned to the table on the platform, "Come on up and we will start in just a minute." He was brusque and even in his compliments seems somewhat condescending. She knew he was not the sort of person with whom she would enjoy spending time.

As she took the two steps to the platform, two women, and a man were taking the other three seats. She took the seat nearest the lectern and sat down.

The woman beside her introduced herself as Dr. Felmier, and the men introduced themselves as well. Bonnie couldn’t help but notice that she was the only one on the stage without “Doctor” before her name.

She suddenly felt she should not be there. She was not prone to panic, but she felt this was not going to come out good for her.

Dr. Gustine, a balding man in his 60’s adjusted his microphone and began the session “This is the Divergent Views panel discussion. For those who do not know me I am Dr. Gustine, the Executive Director of the Free Thought Society and Professor of Philosophy at Case Western Reserve and I am your moderator this afternoon.”

“Our topic is the Divergent Views of 21st Century Moral Philosophy. On our panel is Dr. Caleb Birk, from Thinker magazine, Dr. Flora Schmitt from the University of Chicago, Dr. Kristen Simmons-Felmier from the Humanist Society and Ms. Bonnie Cooper from the Final Freedom Foundation.”

“The format will be for 90 minutes I will both moderate and pose questions to the panel. Then we will take a short break and then we will have open Q&A time until 5:30. So let us open with this, ‘What forces have been chiefly responsible for the increasingly homogenous nature of public discussion of moral philosophy over the past quarter century?’. Dr. Birk would you care to open our discussion?”

Bonnie was glad that Dr. Birk and then Dr. Schmitt spoke long enough for the moderator to cut them off and go to the next question, “Please, be brief as we would like to cover a good bit of ground in the next- well we now only have seventy minutes. Dr. Simmons-Felmier: What forums or platforms are best for introducing and expounding views that diverge from the current orthodoxy of moral philosophy?”

Bonnie was sure she needed to add something, and since this was nearer her job than the other question she jumped in when Dr. Simmons-Felmier finished, “I would agree with my colleague’s assessment” Bonnie began, though in reality she hadn’t even been listening to her, rather she was formulating her ideas, this was after all a room full of PhD’s.

“I would however suggest that real change in attitudes that would allow for the acceptance of new value paradigms need to come from the institutions that the middle-class already trust. Institutions such as local churches and grassroots civic groups will in the long-run have far more permanent impact on the nation as a whole than will, academic or even political-based approaches. As you are all aware the deep distrust middle America harbors of academia and those who challenge conventional morality has only become deeper over the past few years. Thus if we really want change, it must be tied to institutions trusted by those we seek to impact. ” She, pleased with her opening, briefly described the FFF’s approach for impacting the larger culture.

Bonnie sensed just a bit of condescension when Dr. Schmitt, in effect, rebutted her argument stressing the need for the forward thinkers to take command of the political and educational structure to usher in a new era of divergent thinking.

Bonnie opted out of the next two questions and then gave, what she thought to be extremely weak comments regarding two other topics. All told she was exceedingly glad when the moderator said “OK, my time is up. We will take a five-minute break then we will open to your questions.”

Bonnie was relieved when Isabel and Carl approached the speaker’s table to talk to her during the break. They were quite friendly but it was obvious they limited their talk to the forum’s topics. There was no hint about what had happened the night before, other than a quiet comment by Isabel, “The pics of you and me came out better than I’d hoped. We will send them to you this evening.”

Once Dr. Gustine called the meeting back to order, Bonnie was actually relived when the next question was pointed directly at her, at least she knew she had something to say when a young man near the front asked “Ms. Campbell, does the FFF use it’s funds to support LBGTQI rights groups in their effort to provide equal rights to sexual minorities?”

Before she had a chance to answer the moderator cut in “I’m sorry, but we would prefer the questions to stay a bit more general, but go ahead Ms. Cooper make a comment if you wish.”

“Thank you Dr. Gustine, I’ll answer but be very brief. While the Final Freedom Foundation is completely supportive of LGBT rights, so far we have focused our funding to those groups who are more universal in their goals, and frankly the LBGT community’s efforts already have in place effective funding mechanisms. Additionally the FFF rejects the Cartesian dichotomous view of sexuality supported by many people who represent these groups. We believe it is not useful to assign people some social-political label based on their sexual arousal patterns. We would suggest that sexual attraction and arousal is never exclusively based on genitalia and in a state of evolution throughout one’s adult life.”

Her last words were clipped short by Dr. Schmitt who with a vengeance decried “That is a cop out, it sounds as if you just don’t want to be associated with LGBTQI+ groups. The fight for LGBTQI+ rights must be fought and won. It is far more important than your ideas of public nudism.”

Bonnie was dumbfounded by the venom in the attack, she struggled for an answer when Dr. Simmons-Felmier calmly said “I see the merit in Ms. Campbell’s position but, I also understand how the legacy of sexual repression has indeed fallen hardest on those in the LGBTQ community”

Dr. Gustine took that opportunity to shift to something new by calling on a woman on the front row who had raised her hand earlier.

“Could several of you comment on the proposition that a society with open and pervasive sexual culture would be more intellectually enlightened or would such a culture lead to a debasement of human interaction lowering it to one of simple biological imperatives?"

Dr. Birk began in his measured monotone “The intellectual life is one of reflection and introspection. I cannot see how by increasing the visibility of sexuality does anything but lower the culture to the lowest common denominator. It certainly would do nothing to stimulate creative thought.”

He was more polite than Dr. Schmitt, but he clearly was on the same vein of thought and no sooner had he stopped speaking than Dr. Schmitt began her angry tirade again.

“Our society is already one of pervasive exploitive sexuality. If we wish to bring liberation to the oppressed, we must essentially do the opposite of what Ms. Campbell is suggesting. It is only by exercising the strong arm of the state to increase it’s presence in policing exploitive sexual practices will we improve the intellectual climate of the nation.” She took a long breath and then continued “Force of law was needed to desegregate the south. Force of law was needed to begin to address discrimination against women. For the foreseeable future, force of law will be needed to fight discrimination based on sexual orientation. And, contrary to Ms. Campbell’s rose-colored view of the world, force of law will be needed to control the sexual images and actions that are keeping women in bondage.”

Bonnie just sat wide eyed as she was being verbally attacked.

Dr. Schmitt continued “If we just assumed that all sex whether it is private, or in her world public, is consensual just because the man doesn’t use a knife to rape the woman is to invite a world of public humiliation and degradation of women.”

For a second time Dr. Simmons-Felmier came to her rescue.

“I’m not convinced that such pessimism is warranted. I understand the concerns of my colleagues, but I must differ in the application. I personally, and I think this group as a whole, is committed to personal liberty. I would suggest the power of sexuality to harm and discriminate and demean is rooted in the historical shame attached to all things sexual. Please consider the end result of de-mystifying sexuality. It is worth considering the idea that the normalizing of free and open sexual behavior would in fact reduce, not increase, the ability of sex to be used as a weapon and a tool for oppressors. Further, I simply cannot imagine there would be any benefit to freedom of thought should the state become even more of a sex police than it already is. Haven’t we learned from the past that the freedom to express our individuality is only hampered by state intrusion? We as a society have come so far in the past half century; I would suggest that Ms. Campbell’s vision is simply to keep the progress moving to its logical conclusion.”

Bonnie, still in shock from the viciousness of the attacks was slightly more prepared to speak when the moderator asked for her comments. She leaned forward and searched for words.

“I…“ she paused still not ready to speak. “I, am a bit taken off guard by the hostility to these ideas of personal freedom, especially from a group like this so vocally committed to free thought.” As she spoke her head cleared and she became more confident. “I am used to opposition to our ideas back home in the Bible belt.” She recalled what Cooper had told her earlier of the group Margo was forming “I have learned just this morning an organized group is preparing an aggressive response to the FFF’s campaign, to roll back the gains won in the past decades for freedom of sexual expression. Until now I could not imagine free thinkers joining the puritan crusade to move society back to the 1950’s oppressive restrictions of all things sexual, but that is exactly what it sounded like Dr. Schmitt is suggesting. Who here really wants to see a new Hays Code of censorship?”

The applause told her that her comments clearly found resonance with the audience; but it appeared Dr. Gustine did not like the direction this was leading so he reasserted control by abruptly asking for other discussion topics.

The forum lasted only about fifteen minutes after the next new question. Bonnie, still reeling from the attacks said nothing. She was busy maintaining her composure, holding back the tears that were welling in her eyes.

When Dr. Gustine was giving a wrap-up of the conference, Gayle slipped up behind Bonnie and asked in her ear “Could you be available for a meet and greet in the hospitality suite tonight after dinner?”

Bonnie, a bit surprised, nodded yes.

When Dr. Gustine finished, Gayle took the stage and spoke of next year’s conference and other such matters. Then just before dismissing the meeting she said “And, for those of you not heading home right now, Ms. Campbell has agreed to join me in the hospitality suite at 7:00, so if any of you have more input for her she will be available then.” Gayle then closed the conference and the room began to empty quickly.

Bonnie sat at her seat pretending to organize her papers, not wanting to get into a discussion until both Dr. Schmitt and Dr. Birk had exited the ballroom.

It had been so draining, she was tired and just wanted to rest. She had always known that many people were vehemently opposed to what she and Cooper and the FFF were trying to do, but this was the first face-to-face confrontation she had experienced. And coming from a leader of the feminist left made it even more hurtful… and bewildering. Right then and there. Gayle invited her and Dr. Gustine to join her for dinner but she declined, opting to go to her room and rest. On the phone with Cooper, she broke down and cried. Once she had gotten that out, she felt better. She asked again about Cooper's night at Sherri's. This time he told her in some detail about the sex with Magnolia LeCroix. There was no mistaking that he had a good time without her, and that irritated her slightly, though she knew that was unfair. It only took a few moments to fall asleep.

The hotel phone woke her. She stumbled for the phone. It was Gayle.

“The suite is full of people wanting to meet you, are you coming?”

She looked at the clock on the end table, it was 7:08 PM. Bonnie apologized for being late and told Gayle she was on her way. As quickly as possible she began to pull herself together. She brushed her hair and teeth. In the mirror she saw her silk blouse was now wrinkled, she pulled the other one from the hanging bag. She knew full well the half-inch wide sheer stripes would make her nipples more than slightly visible, and the quarter-cup bra she was wearing just pushed her breasts up and out to emphasize them. She opted to fasten only half of the shirt's buttons then took a quick look in the mirror to ensure everything was in place. She was not pleased how the bra looked. It seemed out of step with the rest of her well-made (and expensive) outfit. Given half of the shirt’s surface area was transparent, the bra was quite visible, and for the first time, she realized the bra itself looked cheap. If she was going to present herself as someone worthy of respect, she should not be wearing something from the local sex shop with this outfit. Deliberately exposing her breasts was one thing, but doing so in something that looked trashy was something entirely different. But, Bonnie had no time to play with her wardrobe, she was late already. She hurriedly pulled on the grey suit jacket, grabbed her briefcase (in case she needed it), and headed out the door.

The hospitality suite was actually a conference room set up like a lounge with overstuffed chairs arranged around coffee tables. Fortunately for Bonnie, who had not eaten since lunch, there was also a table with hot chaffing dishes and a table of wines. The room was not crowded but there were at least two dozen people sitting or standing in small groups. No sooner had she entered than every eye turned to her. Though she was now used to being the center of attention, after the last session she was apprehensive despite the warm smiles directed her way.

She quickly noticed that the group waiting for her was visibly younger than most of the conference attendees. She had earlier been taken by the sea of middle-aged baby boomer faces in the audience only sprinkled by perhaps one in ten who appeared to be in their twenties or early thirties. In the hospitality suite, however, it looked like a group of graduate students. Isabel and Carl gave her a big smile and a wave from the far side of the room. She was glad to see them. For Bonnie the most important thing at that moment was that she did not feel any hostility, it was much more like the groups to whom she had presented before.

“Bonnie!” Gayle called “Just in time, the natives were getting restless” she quipped as she crossed the room with a paunchy young man in tow. Arriving by her side she introduced Orin, her husband. She went on to say he was Dr. Orin Perkins, assistant professor of philosophy at The University of Minnesota at Duluth.

“I was able to sit in on your second lecture” he began extending his hand “It certainly pushed the boundaries and I’m sure it will stimulate discussion for some time.”

Bonnie took his hand “That is the whole idea, get people thinking and talking.”

“That it did” he agreed.

Gayle took Bonnie by the shoulder and led her to a place near the center of the room and raised her voice “OK people, Bonnie Campbell is here to meet and greet. I’m sure you will find her even more fascinating one-on-one. Please show her some good old Minnesota hospitality.”

After a short round of applause, Bonnie thought she should say something. “I’m glad to be here, but I’m not sure how interesting I am.” As she looked around the room speaking, she moved her eyes from person to person. They were watching her intently, waiting for her to say something.

To give herself time she said “It’s a bit stuffy in here. I hope you don’t mind if I take off my jacket.” It really was stuffy in the room, but she also knew their response to her risqué blouse would give her a clue as to how she might go forward. Out of habit, she straightened her posture to lift and accentuate her bust. On the walls were a series of mirrors, evidently put up to make the small room seem larger. In it, she could see her reflection. In the room’s moderate light, the overall effect was less sheer than she thought it would be; however, it still showed off more than enough of both the bra and her breasts to make her point. Additionally, the fact the shirt was only half buttoned gave an unimpeded view of a good bit of her cleavage. The bra didn’t look so bad in this light and she was pleased with her look. Scanning back across the room she judged the looks on the faces.

She was pleased that she only saw one woman scowl, and even that did not seem to be hostile. She relaxed, feeling at home in a friendly crowd she began speaking “If you’ll give me a minute, I’ll tell you a little bit about me.”

“I am in reality just a fairly typical wife and mother. I’ve been married for over twenty years, my husband and I have two teenage children, I am active in my church and community. I was a school teacher in years past, but until recently I have been a full-time, stay-at-home mom. I’ve been a homeroom mom, a Brownie troop leader, a cub scout den mother, a PTA president, an assistant tee-ball coach, and even vice-chair of the local garden club.”

Before she could go on, Gayle stepped in to get the conversation going with the question she knew was on everyone’s mind after seeing those last few slides. “Bonnie, while all that might be true, those last few slides in your presentation says you are not a typical wife and mother by a long shot. I’ve already heard several people suggest that the last two sets of photos in your presentation are just Photoshop magic rather than actual photos of you. Could you comment?”

Bonnie smiled at the faces staring at her, “The photos used to make those morphing images right at the end of my presentation were indeed actual photos of me taken in a professional studio. So, the images that looked like I was in a park, are Photoshop magic, but the base image is quite real. The handsome but balding man with me in the first photoset is my wonderful husband, the young woman is my part-time assistant at the FFF office and the young man in that set is her boyfriend. The hot Latin man with me in that final set that morphed into the park scene, which was Photoshop magic, is a Brazilian graduate fine art student at Augusta State. And he is even better looking in person than the single photo shows.”

She paused to get the expected laughs, mostly from the women. In the prior months, she’d gotten pretty good at judging her audience and giving them the time to respond to her comments. She knew in advance she’d get a response to that last quip.

“Dr. Douglass uses him from time to time as a model and she asked him to pose with me. Each shoot took a couple of hours and nothing is faked.” She looked over at Gayle, “So, to make it crystal clear, yes, in making the photos there was vaginal penetration with all three men… yes, I had sex in the studio to make the photos. So, OK, I’ll grant you, perhaps I’m not totally stereotypical in some ways.”

There were some scattered laughs.

“So, to set the stage for any particular question you may have, let me say this. For the majority of my married life, my husband and I were monogamous, and it was me, not him, that initiated our move from monogamy. Further, it was not out of some attempt to save a doomed marriage that we opened our bed up to others. We were and still are quite happily married. What happened was that several years before we actually acted on it the first time, we came to believe monogamy was not the only moral lifestyle choice for a married couple. My first foray into open marriage was a couple of years ago with my best friend and then with her husband as well. I say all this to let you know that I teach this material because I believe it and I live what I believe. While I’m not monogamous anymore, I don’t believe that monogamy is wrong or second-class. Rather I believe each person should make his or her own lifestyle choice and be free to live out that choice without shame or a need to hide behind closed doors. If any of you want to know more, I’ll be here as long as Gayle needs me. Just know, as my kid’s friends will tell you, I am an open book, if you ask a question, you will get the answer even if it is more direct and sometimes more explicit than you expected to hear. I would like to meet and get to know you as you get to know me. But, before that, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to raid the buffet for a moment because I missed dinner.”

There was a round of applause as Bonnie moved to the buffet. From behind her, Gayle said, “You look amazing, and what a way to get a stuffy group to open up. I don’t have the figure to pull off that outfit, and even if I did, I wouldn’t have the courage.”

Bonnie began loading up a plate with some very nice looking hot hors d'oeuvres, “Gayle you are very cute, you would look great in something like this. Like all things, it's getting the fit right.” This was not an empty comment, Bonnie was sure Gayle would look good in a sheer top and quarter-cup bra. At 5’ 4” and about 120 lbs. she wasn’t a supermodel, but she was cute (in a librarian sort of way) and well-proportioned. “But that is not the point,” Bonnie went on “In my travels, I’ve seen many, many naked women, and I have found most of us look pretty much the same. It’s just feeling confident about who you are, under the skin. Once you feel good about that, then it’s easy to be comfortable when you are presenting in a room full of people wearing your skin and nothing else… which I’ve done more than once.”

She looked back at Gayle and smiled. She was sure the young woman didn’t believe her one bit.

The evening went quickly. Many people just wanted to voice support; others were young professors who wanted to ask about speaking to their class, and others were campus student leaders at colleges and universities in the Great Lakes region who asked about presentations to their student groups. Not surprisingly, she found herself discussing both the ethics and practical side of, what for the night she called, negotiated non-monogamy. She supposed over the night she talked to three dozen people in groups of two to four. Predictably, once the first person had the nerve to ask, and everyone saw she was glad to do so, many (most) wanted camera-phone pics with her.

Isabel and Carl stayed most of the evening. Perhaps an hour in, Isabel, discreetly, pulled Bonnie aside and thanked her “for the most amazing experience in my life… on so many levels. I think it will take twenty pages of journaling tonight to begin to get it all.”

“You don’t know how happy I am to hear that,” Bonnie replied. They chatted a bit and Bonnie gave Isabel her cell number and told her, “Don’t hesitate to ask if you need guidance on where to go from here. I take responsibility for my actions seriously and will be your guide as long as you need me.”

At 10:00, Gayle flashed the lights and told the remaining people that the hospitality room would close soon. For the next ten minutes, Bonnie handed out the last few of the business cards she had brought to Minnesota and then gave out her FFF email address several times to those who did not get cards.

Soon the room was empty and Gayle and Orin were picking up the last of their organization's literature from the different tables. Bonnie relaxed, sitting on the arm of one of the room’s many chairs “I think that went well, thanks for suggesting it.”

Gayle slipped down onto the chair across from Bonnie “Yea, I think it did. What do you think Orin? Some of your colleagues were here.”

Stepping over to stand beside Gayle’s chair, “Oh, I think they were quite taken with Ms. Campbell.” He looked over to Bonnie “You have quite a way about you. I’m afraid my fellows rarely get to rub shoulders with people as winsome.”

“I’m now winsome. I like that.” Bonnie chuckled.

Gayle extended his compliment, “Oh, he’s right. You are a breath of fresh air. I’m afraid musty and dull comes with the ground in the world of philosophy. Trust me, between my events and Orin’s, I had begun to think all the world was stuffy, self-absorbed, and disdainful of all things fun and alive. I really think that is why you got attacked at the open forum, you made a broadside attack on their belief in the superiority of tedium.”

It was Orin’s turn to chuckle, “Well said Gayle. I think I might quote you in class on Monday.”

Gayle acknowledged the compliment with a small bow, then added “and to top it off, when you took off your jacket here at the reception, I thought some of their eyes would pop out of their heads.”

“Oh, was it too much?”

“No, just right I’d say. After the slides in your presentation, it was just enough to keep them off balance, while supporting your overall premise.” Gayle said in an upbeat tone, while Orin nodded in agreement. “And besides, you look very sexy in that outfit. Not just the blouse, but the skirt in boots too.”

“I’m glad you thought it worked. I actually had not planned on wearing this blouse tonight, but I wrinkled the other one when I fell asleep and was rushing to get here. Oh, that is why I was late. Sorry. But Gayle, I still think something like this would look great on you. I bet Orin would agree.”

She looked to her husband who grinned but clearly was not sure whether agreeing or not would be in his best interest.

Gayle shook her head, “I told you I’m just not pretty enough to wear something like that.”

“Orin?” Bonnie chided, “Are you going to let her say that?”

“No, I’m not.” Looking at his wife Orin said, “I know that you would look great in that.” Then he sheepishly added, “What I would give to see you at a party dressed like that.”

She turned her head to look at him “Really? You wouldn’t mind if I wore a mini skirt and a blouse that showed off my breasts to everyone?”

“Well, not on campus, but at certain events, sure. You look great, and you have amazing breasts. I’ve told you that a hundred times,” he answered with increasing confidence.

“But isn’t that like showing me off like some possession?” she asked, partially defensive.

Bonnie intervened before this got out of hand “Gayle, it is my experience that the confident and respectful man wants his wife to feel good about herself and it is the man who wants to hide his wife away that is the one to watch out for.”

Gayle looked back at Bonnie and evidently thought through what she said, “I guess you’re right. I should be glad he is confident in me, and my ability to choose.”

Bonnie nodded then added, “and that he thinks you are so attractive that showing off more of your body would impress others and expand your self-confidence from just your intellect to your sexuality. I can tell you are quite confident in your mental capacities, but much less confident in yourself as a sexual person. You need not be. You've got a very nice body; and besides, sexual attractiveness is more about your attitude than your physical features."

Gayle countered, “You might be right, but I just can’t imagine having the confidence to do the things you do.”

“Like what?” Bonnie queried.

“Like showing several photos of yourself having sex with different people to a room full of strangers. Am I right in understanding that you have sex quite often with other people in the room watching?”

“Sure, I do. There is no reason sex should be hidden behind closed doors. Sex is positive and natural and not bad for the environment. And remember one of the three men with whom I was having sex in those photos is my husband.” Bonnie said feeling a bit empowered. “I guess I should be surprised that an erudite, educated free thinker like you has only had sex when no one can see. It would seem to me that that is, or should seem more unusual.” She cocked her head looking for an answer.

Orin appeared as if he was uncomfortable with the subject, but Gayle was visibly pondering the question.

Bonnie went on, “I’m not trying to be combative, but how can you feel free from centuries of repression when you have engaged in one of the most basic, important and beautiful parts of your life only when you are firmly hidden from all other people? Can’t you see that is the long arm of the Popes and Puritans governing your life even now?”

Gayle continued to think and even looked back at Orin for support; he just looked back at her as if to say he had no response. After a few moments of silence she said, “Well, it’s not like I’ve never been in a room where a couple is having sex. In college one year I had a roommate who had her boyfriend sleep over a couple nights a month. The first few months of the semester I just quietly slipped out of the room when he came over, but one night I had a paper to work on. Before I knew it, I could hear them behind me, doing it. Now my roommate had been saying the same kind of things you do all semester. She had even called me provincial for my embarrassment over the fact she and her boyfriend had sex in our room. So, that night I just stayed at my desk working on my paper. But to be honest I didn’t get any work done. In fact, I went to the bathroom to get myself off even before they had finished, and getting up I got a peek at them. After that night, I just stayed in the room when he came over, and pretended it was no big deal.”

“And was it?” Bonnie asked. “A big deal, I mean.”

“Well, yes and no. It did get to be normal, but it also made me feel bad that I couldn’t’ be so open.”

“May I ask if you were sexually active at the time?”

“I had a boyfriend for a little while the year before, but that year I wasn’t dating anyone.”

“So you were celibate the whole year?” Bonnie asked.

Gayle glanced back at Orin then slowly said “Well, no, not exactly.”

“Not exactly?”

“Well, no, I wasn’t. But I wasn’t dating per se either. You see, I had a friend for three of my four years in college, he wasn’t like a boyfriend, but he and I would get together from time to time and mess around. The truth is, I rarely had actual dates during my undergraduate years. I was rather a drab bookworm and was on an academic scholarship, so I lived for my grades.”

Orin cut in “Don’t give her that! What she means is the guys were too intimidated by her. She was quite the young scholar and could have gone to any school she wanted but chose to go to little Juniata College where she was by leaps and bounds the brightest one in school."

Gayle shrugged “What can I say, my great grandfather was President of Juniata College. I had to go to the school. Even the dorm where I lived was named Simmons Hall for my family.”

Bonnie nodded.

“But yes, I’ll admit it I was a big fish in a very little pond. And yes that did hurt my chances in dating”

Her husband jumped in “Don’t let her play that little fish thing. Gayle here is quite the scholar in her own right. I’m sure she did not tell you, but in October, she was given the American Philosophical Association’s award for the most promising student in the country based on her half a dozen published articles on the modern social justice applications of political liberalism in the 21st Century. After she defends her dissertation in the spring, she will be Dr. Simmons-Perkins, Ph.D.”

“I’m impressed. No, she didn’t even give me a hint of all that” Bonnie put in. “What is your dissertation on?

Gayle’s face betrayed she loved this topic. “It’s a little crazy, but I am proposing a new application of John Rawls’ 20th-century political liberalism with less emphasis on economic issues and more focus on social and political freedoms. I am trying to push back against both the economic primacy of neo-liberalism and what I see as the nihilism of critical theory. Since I work full-time, I’ve been working on it for over three years, but it’s at the final stage of editing. You can understand why I was so impressed by the material coming out of the FFF. Your group is taking the philosophical ideas that have dominated my life for the past few years and given them a real-world application.”

Bonnie knew she had only the vaguest idea of what this young academic was saying or how the FFF work related to it. But she was pleased that she seemed to be validating the FFF none the less.

Her husband who was focused not on the talk of his wife's dissertation, but on her sex life during her undergraduate days, pulled her back to that conversation when he asked, “So why didn’t you invite your 'friend with benefits' over to your room and have sex when your roommate was there?”

She smiled broadly. Evidently, Gayle enjoyed her husband’s show of interest. “I couldn’t, he was seeing someone. Though with me, in private, he was open about his bisexuality, but in public, he was the leader of our little school's gay and lesbian support group. He was deathly afraid of being outed as not being gay enough. So, he and I did it on the sly for several years until he graduated, and then ...” she paused “a few times we have gotten together since we graduated. The summer after we’d both started graduate school, we spent a whole week, posing as a hetero-couple, in Quebec City.”

It was clear to Bonnie that Orin had never heard this story. She couldn’t help but wonder why.

Gayle evidently saw his face and, looking right at her husband said “But, though I’ve talked to him since, we haven’t had sex since you and I first started dating. But for four years, publicly we called ourselves close, plutonic, friends. While in private we knew it was more. We both found the sex without trying to make a relationship work comforting... and it was fun.”

Orin looked surprised. She looked up at her husband “I’m sorry I never told you.”

He patted her on the shoulder. “You never pretended to be a virgin when we met, I certainly wasn’t. And if it had been a big deal to me I would have asked.”

She smiled and turned back to Bonnie “To be honest I was in love with him, but his identity was very much as a gay man, despite how much we enjoyed being together and enjoyed our sexual relationship. Since then, I’ve done a good bit of research and am working on a paper for publication about closeted bisexuals in the gay community. So, for me it had to be just fun with a friend. And …..yes, I very much wanted to bring him to the dorm to let Collette watch us. I fantasized about it a lot, but I let the chance slip away.”

“Well, you are still young and don’t have to hide your love. You and Orin should talk about it, step out and try bringing your sexuality out of the closet.”

“Yea, right” she said looking around to Orin. “He’s so shy, he’d never do it.”

He looked back at her, “I don’t think you’re giving me enough credit. I’m more adventurous than you think?”

“Really?” she responded a bit wide-eyed.

“Yes, really!” he said somewhat indignantly.

“And who do we know who would just let us get down right in front of them?”

He was taken aback, “I don’t know, I just said don’t count me out. If you wanted to do it in front of someone, I’d be right there with you.”

Gayle turned back to Bonnie “Well, I think you may have made some converts, though I don’t know when we would really have an opportunity to try it out.”

Bonnie inquired, “How well do you know the people who were here tonight, like personally?”

Both Gayle and Orin seemed to be caught off guard by her question. Orin answered, “Perhaps half of the people who came tonight are part of our local discussion group. Some we know better than others.”

“Well….” Bonnie said in a drawn-out voice, “One of the couples here tonight, I won’t say who, came with me to my room last night, and I’m pretty sure they would not object to watching you two have sex… or possibly more.”

They looked at each other clearly unable to think of what to say or do next.

Bonnie slid off the arm of the chair on which she sat, sinking into the deep cushion.

“The first time I did it in front of a whole group of spectators was only about a year ago, on a big rock, on the side of a jungle lake in the Caribbean.” She said this knowing full well it was not exactly the first time she had been seen having sex but it would have taken too long to explain about her own college experiences. “My husband’s company sponsored a trip to the Caribbean and ………” She related the story. “…… and it didn't take long for me to find that I loved others joining in by just watching me. It was like this whole new world had opened up. Why did I have to wait all those years, when I had fantasized about it for more than a decade? Fear? Guilt? Whatever it was, I wish I had been your age when I let go of my inhibitions.”

Bonnie watched Gayle and Orin. It appeared clear to her that in their minds they were considering what she was saying, and so she decided to push the issue. “Those same reasons will not go away, you just have to push them aside and decide to claim the day as yours, the opportunity is right in front of you to try.” She knew these were bright people; she didn’t need to be any more direct than that, so she stopped speaking and relaxed in the chair.

Gayle slowly looked over to Orin. She reached to him and gripped his hand. Bonnie, and surely Gayle, could see the tent formed in her husband’s dress slacks. Gayle looked back at Bonnie. She waited for a moment, and then told Gayle, “I think your husband is saying that it is up to you.”

Gayle’s eyes scanned the room, clearly thinking this through. She looked back at Bonnie “Will you want to join in?”

“How about I just play coach and leave the performance to you two?”

Gayle nodded, her eyes now showing a bit of panic, Bonnie knew she would need to help so she added, “Though if you don’t object, I might do a little hands-on coaching.”

Gayle nodded again, this time with a relieved smile.

“Here,” Bonnie said, rising to her feet “Stand up.”

Bonnie walked around the coffee table between the facing pairs of chairs and offered a hand to Gayle. Bonnie helped her to her feet and then turned her to face her husband.

“Orin, come on over here” Bonnie softly commanded. Before he arrived, Bonnie reached for the buttons of Gayle’s blouse and began undoing them. Gayle silently acquiesced and then moved her arms so that the green blouse came off and was dropped to the floor. Under her blouse, rather than a bra, Gayle wore a black sports top. She stood completely still as Bonnie began to pull the bra/top up, but she needed Gayle’s help for this. Bonnie had to ask her to lift her hands up because she seemed to have gone catatonic.

Orin’s eyes focused on what Bonnie estimated to be a 36B chest with small pink nipples. His style as he began to fondle her breast left something to be desired, but his enthusiasm was intense and he took each breast in turn and suckled hard. While the young couple kissed like first-time lovers, Bonnie let her left-hand rest on Gayle’s shoulder while her right hand silently unzipped her own skirt and let it fall to the floor. When their kissing began to slacken, Bonnie had no trouble unbuckling Gayle’s belt and undoing her pants. She slid them down over her hips. Where Bonnie wore only a very small thong, Gayle sported basic cotton panties. Bonnie had expected as much.

Having also removed her own blouse, Bonnie pulled up close to Gayle, her firm nipples, lifted but fully exposed in her partial shelf-bra, pressed on the younger, shorter woman’s upper back. She knew full well the jolt of energy the young woman would feel. Bonnie slipped her thong down her legs and over her boots before gripping Gayle’s hips in her hands. She pressed her bare crotch firmly to Gayle’s round upper buttocks. She spread her legs slightly and ground her mound softly on Gayle to make sure the young woman knew exactly what she was doing, before whispering, “Feels nice, doesn’t it?”

Only a small gurgle was the positive reply.

Orin finally took some initiative and hooked his fingers in her panties to slide them down over her hips. It was only when he knelt to ease Gayle’s pants and panties to her feet did he finally notice that Bonnie now only wore her boots and quarter-cup shelf bra. Seeing her nudity, he froze.

Bonnie nudged him to keep going by saying, “Good idea Orin, but I think she will need to sit to get her pants and boots off.”

Bonnie fell into the chair, pulling Gayle down into her lap in the process.

Bonnie splayed her legs and Gayle slid down to the cushion just in front of her mentor. “Here, this will work better,” she told the now eager husband. He quickly went to work freeing his wife from her boots, socks, pants, and panties before burying his face in her pubic hair. Her legs spread wider and she pushed back on Bonnie, whose smoothly shaven mons was firmly wedged at the small of Gayle’s back. When her husband’s ministrations began to show effect, Bonnie wrapped her arms around Gayle’s waist to stabilize her as her hips began to move.

Bonnie was surprised at how quickly Gayle’s hips in front of her moved from undulations to thrusts, and how good the motions felt on her own vulva. “Looks like I’m going to get off after all,” she thought as the vertebra in Gayle’s back rubbed up and down on her clit.

Bonnie’s hands, without her conscious thought, slipped up and embraced the two breasts just above them. Gayle’s chest arched to meet the hands, confirming that she appreciated Bonnie’s participation. Shortly thereafter, Bonnie heard deep breaths begin, the harbinger of Gayle’s climax. It took longer than Bonnie had expected for her new friend to make it up the final crest, but there was never any doubt in Bonnie’s mind that she would reach it in time. The hips in Bonnie's lap moved from predictable thrusts to wild bucking. In her mind, Bonnie said “So much for getting off while they do. There is no way I can cum with this wild ride.”

Before Gayle’s heart had even begun to slow after her full-body orgasm, Orin had shed his pants and guided his penis into his wife and immediately commenced full-speed thrusting. Bonnie could see over Gayle’s shoulder to the penetration point and it was apparent her sitting position coupled with his short reach was not working. Bonnie grasped Gayle’s thighs and pulled upward, tilting her pelvis forward, toward Orin’s efforts.

Bonnie could see and feel the solid pelvis-to-pelvis contact the next thrust made. Gale’s soft thighs compressed completely as Orin gained a better purchase by reaching beyond his wife and gripping Bonnie’s hips as an anchor point. By the third thrust in this new position, Bonnie was feeling the strong impact through Gayle’s body. It pressed onto her mound, and Gayle’s backbone nestled between her outer lips and spread them open. His vigor surprised Bonnie as he drove his penis down hard; over and over again. Many minutes ticked by without him losing speed.

“He’s good,” Bonnie said into Gayle’s ear, but loud enough to encourage her husband. She followed up the comment with a series of soft kisses on Gayle’s neck. Then she whispered, “Is what I am doing OK with you?”

Gayle moaned, “Oh yes.”

Orin pressed home and held, then kissed his wife deeply. At first Bonnie thought he was climaxing, but then he began to grind on her while continuing the kiss. Bonnie had clearly underestimated this academic. He did not lack the ability, just the permission to use it. She wondered if her new friend knew and appreciated her husband’s staying power.

His kisses lowered to her chest and he took each small, but full breast in his mouth and gently kissed and sucked the nipples. With his body now holding Gayle’s legs, Bonnie extended her grasp to Orin’s hips. She felt the circular grind punctuated with pelvic thrusts.

Gayle’s hands reached back and down to Bonnie’s hips and she began her hip thrusts again, meeting her husband thrust to thrust. Her second climax was followed soon by a quivering Bonnie could feel in Orin’s hips as he ejaculated hard with, one, two, three, four manly shots into his wife’s womb, before becoming limp and sliding to the floor.

Without his body pressing her onto Bonnie, or Bonnie holding her legs, Gayle slid off the chair into her husband’s lap where they held each other, breathing very hard. Bonnie was very aroused, but not finished. She decided that it would help the experience for Gayle and Orin to both be seen having sex and to watch her openly, unashamedly masturbating. She swung one leg up onto the arm of the chair to give easy access to pleasuring herself with purpose. She knew her climax was close, so she closed her eyes and focused her energy on the sensitive parts of her labia and her clit. The sensations were intense, but she kept letting them build, holding off her orgasm. She was sure that she was captivating the attention of both Gayle and her husband.

After she let her orgasm arrive, she saw how the couple was entranced by her performance, so she went for a second. This time she pushed two fingers into her vagina and fucked herself to a rather wet orgasm, and deliberately did so in ways that gave a good view to her two-person audience. She closed her eyes and took her time. She purposefully was quite vocal and demonstrative as she approached and then reached her orgasm. Only after her second climax did she slow her self-stimulation. She could easily have gone for more, but this was for her audience. She could play by herself later.

Bonnie heard movement and opened her eyes to see Gayle, on the ground right in front of her, on all fours. Orin, evidently ready to go again, was guiding his renewed erection into his wife.

“Well,” Bonnie” groggily said, “I guess even stuffy professors are good for more than a one-shot evening.”

Gayle looked up and smiled at Bonnie, “I’m not complaining one bit.”

Orin pressed his organ home and said “I must admit this is unusual for me, but you did put on quite a show that seems to have brought life back to my penis.”

Still gasping for air, Bonnie said “I was just the audience; you and Gayle were the show. And you did much better than I had expected. Gayle should know she’s lucky to have a good lover like you.” She’d not actually taken her hands from her crotch, so with the couple fucking right in front of her, she felt free to work on that pending third orgasm.

She watched as Orin gripped his hands into Gayle’s soft ass and began short but firm strokes. They came fast, due to their short stroke length and with each ram home a shock wave moved through her thighs and buttocks. She kept her eyes on Bonnie’s as her body shook from the impacts.

“Good?” Bonnie asked.

“Oh, yea!” she said breathlessly.

Bonnie masturbated with increasing vigor watching the young couple. Occasionally she made comments to Gayle to let them both know she enjoyed watching.

Although Orin’s penis might have been ready for a long round two, his cardio system was not. After not more than ten minutes his breath was ragged and sweat was running down his face and chest. He took a pause, then started again more slowly and less firmly.

Gayle looked back at him “Are you OK?”

He heaved out an affirmative, but it was clear to Bonnie he was not OK. Gayle evidently could see that too. She rocked her body forward causing his full erection to pull out of her. Rolling to a sitting position, she reached over and began stroking his penis. “Here, you don’t have to cum now. We can wait till we get home.”

He, very red in the face and clearly at the end of his endurance, did not disagree and just collapsed down on his side.

Bonnie took her hand from between her legs and pulled herself to a sitting position “I think you need to get him home.”

“I think so too” Gayle agreed and she began gathering her clothes.

Bonnie handed the younger woman her blouse with the see-through stripes. “Here put this on. I’ll be fine with just my blazer and bra. I’ve worn less in hotel hallways before.”

Gayle pulled on the shirt. Though it was a little big, once she tucked it into her pants, it looked very good on her. There was no question that her young perky breasts didn’t need the support that Bonnie’s did. She first looked into one of the mirrors, then faced her husband. “And you think I look good enough in this to wear it to a party?”

Orin was just standing up. His erection had flagged, but looking at her, Bonnie saw it move upward again. His wife saw it too and Bonnie could sense her pleasure at his response. His verbal affirmation that he would like to see her wear it out came quickly to confirm what his penis had already said.

Soon the trio was dressed… well, dressed enough to walk out the hospitality room’s door. Gayle had put her husband’s suit jacket on over the see-through blouse. Even so, Orin and Gayle were both excited as they walked down the corridor, to the elevator, then up to Bonnie’s floor without either woman buttoning their jackets.

As they walked, Bonnie asked, “Would you like me to reach out to the lovely couple I shared my bed with last night? Perhaps suggest to them to contact you for dinner? They live within easy driving distance of Duluth.”

Gayle looked over to Orin, he nodded, then she turned back to Bonnie, “Yes, we would. Though I suspect I know to whom you are referring. Since you appeared to already know one of the couples who came tonight, and I doubt you knew anyone in Duluth before you arrived; I suspect they were your guests last night. I don’t know him, but I’ve met her a few times. Yes, we would very much be interested in talking to them.”

At the door of Bonnie’s room, Gayle pulled Bonnie in a close hug. “Thank you so much for coming to our conference… and, well everything.”

Bonnie was moved by the sincerity of her emotion, “This is my mission in life now, and I am so happy to be here.” She hugged her back and then said in her ear “And besides, I liked the show,” and kissed her on the cheek.

When they arrived at Bonnie’s hotel room, Gayle offered to pick Bonnie up to take her to the airport in the morning, but Bonnie declined saying “I think you guys should stay in bed late tomorrow. I’ll take the hotel shuttle.” She winked before closing the door to her hotel room for the night.

Taking off the jacket she again looked at the bra she’d worn. "No," she said aloud, I'll have to do better than this one. Removing the bra, she dropped it in the trash can. Again aloud, she said, “I don't care what a have to pay for them, I'm getting some high-quality sexy bras that look great no matter how sheer my shirts are." She thought about it, then added, "Cooper won't complain no matter how much they cost."

Once she was in bed, she checked the messages on her phone. Attached to the message from Isabel, there were nine photos from last night. Two were selfies of the three of them, while the other seven were of Bonnie and Isabel, first simply posing in the nude together, then making out… then more explicitly making out. First, she sent a thank you text and said she suspected that Gayle Perkins-Simmons and her husband would be interested in a dinner date. She almost didn’t use that term, but did precisely because of the loaded meaning of the word “date.” But she added a suggestion that Isabel call her in the next day or two so they could talk about it first.

That message sent, she forwarded the best pic of her and Isabel getting it on to Cooper. “That will give him a charge,” Bonnie said out loud.

The last thing she did before shutting off the lights was to get her travel vibrator out of her bag. She knew that third orgasm was still waiting for her.

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05 de jul. de 2023

The discussion just before the blow-up in the panel discussion is interesting:

"What forums or platforms are best for introducing and expounding views that diverge from the current orthodoxy of moral philosophy?” The question is for another panelist, but Bonnie steps in, rejecting "academic or even political-based approaches." She suggests trusted churches and civic groups would be better at helping "middle-class" people embrace a freer sexual ethic.

I believe that the process will involve many forums like Liberum Sexus introducing the idea that sex is a positive good. Then some catalyzing event will make the more existentially correct attitude commonplace. You can't know what that catalyst might be before it happens. I read about an example involving Dutch nudism once.…

05 de jul. de 2023
Respondendo a

I agree that the LGBTQ community brought sex out of the closet, but the MEAN GREEN MEME of postmodernism brought unnecessary sensitivity into play. Characters involved in illicit sex in movies, television, and novels since the introduction of the Code in the 1930s in the USA had to be punished by the end of the story. I prefer the utopia of the FF to the sex-negative dystopia of most narratives of today. Violence is king. Ken Russel, the British film director, said that murder is a sin and against the law and you are allowed to write about it and film it in gory detail. Sex is neither a sin nor against the law but you're not allowed to show…


24 de jun. de 2023

This is a wonderful and convincing statement about ethical nonmonogamy clothed in a sexy story based on real-life experiences. The characters, as usual, are well-drawn, and the conflict with the stuffy old liberals is well-executed. The two couples Bonnie coached into nonmonogamy was beautifully expressed. The images show the reality of the situations to enhance the chapter’s theme strikingly. One cannot legislate morality and more laws and stricter enforcement to suppress sexual expressions would have a detrimental effect. Psychology has shown the things we suppress will pop up elsewhere in worst situations. Teenage sexuality needs guidance not denial or suppression, and sexual activities need consent, not ignorance. You have shown it convincingly in this and throughout all the other 51…

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