In Search of the Final Freedom: Chapter 7

Updated: Jul 21, 2021

In Search of the Final Freedom:

An Erotic Socio-Political Novel

Book One: Unlikely Revolutionaries

Chapter 7


Sailing Beyond the Known Horizon


In October Cooper was promoted to Senior Vice-President of LeMarco & LeMarco Architects, which contrary to its name was actually a design-construct firm. He'd been the Vice President of Design and their lead architect for six years, but this was a huge promotion that came with a substantial raise. The down side was he was now responsible for the highest prestige projects. In particular he’d been promoted to get a huge project in Chicago back on track. The day after he was promoted he was briefed that the hundred million dollar project was in deep trouble. The kind of trouble that could jeopardize the whole company’s reputation, if not its solvency. The basic designs were sound, he had led the design team, but execution was floundering. Mr. LeMarco promised a significant bonus if he could get the project back on to track before spring.


The very next week Cooper was in Chicago for three days. The week after he was in the windy city from Monday to Friday. From November through January he was rarely home more than two days in a week.


It was hard on Cooper but he was enjoying the challenge; however it was even harder on Bonnie back home. The thoughts of summer fun seemed like distant memories. Last year at this time she had husband in her bed and two lovers in town. Now she was alone most of the time and when Cooper was in town, he seemed to be always tired. Bonnie’s sex life had gone from amazing to almost a complete halt.

The extra money allowed the family to take a ski trip to Colorado just after Christmas, but even still Dad met them there and went directly back to Chicago. She'd done some flirting at the lodge, but their itinerary was just too packed to entertain the idea of getting laid by one of the guys who'd eyed her. The trip perked her up, but by the second week of January, when the kids went back to school, that blues came back on her. She sat looking out at the back yard “I really need something to get me going again.” She thought on the events of Cooper’s company Christmas party, but even the arousal that brought, made her more depressed since she was quite sure nothing would come of that.


At the same time, eight hundred miles from home, at his company’s Chicago office, Cooper thought, “Winter can get depressing” as he looked out the window at the grey Chicago skyline. “It seems all I do is work and sleep. I need a break.” The good thing was he could see his work was almost done. He estimated just one more month and things would be to the point that he could do nearly all the work out of Atlanta.


He also thought about Bonnie. “It seems we hardly ever have time for each other, and when I do, I’m so tired. It was almost comic when she quite seriously said that he was free to take a lover while he was so far away. Take a lover? Right. Even if he was the kind of guy to do that, he was working 12 hours a day in the office and then bringing work back to the hotel.


He had hoped his wife would have gotten better when she and his executive assistant, Tina, began to talk several times a week while he'd been gone. Then there was the thing at the company Christmas party.


After their stay in Miami, once a month or so Bonnie made the trip to Atlanta and had lunch with Tina. When Bonnie found someone she could talk to about her sexual journey of discovery, she made a point to follow up. After the trip, she’d told Tina all about what had happened. Tina gave her a great deal of positive reinforcement for her personal courage and her openness in front of Cooper and their kids. Tina never questioned the veracity of her story regarding the Cuban man, she only asked for all the details. When Cooper found out Tina knew all about what had happened, he became worried that he might be the butt of jokes if it got out. To allay his fears, in October Bonnie directly asked Tina what the other women she had told thought of Cooper in light of her sexual explorations. When Bonnie relayed the answer, he was pleased to know the women in the office seemed to think he was great and very unusual for letting his wife have sex with other people without demanding a quid pro quo.

He again thought Tina might help Bonnie out of her funk at Christmas time. On the way home from the company Christmas party, Bonnie told Cooper how she and Tina (both drunk) had slipped off together and gotten completely naked in Cooper's office. When Tina’s boyfriend went looking for her a good while later, he found his girlfriend and her boss’s wife on the rug doing six-nine. Tina had been on top eating her with the help of one of the Cuban cigars Mr. LeMarco had given out as Charismas presents as a dildo. Rather than thinking it was hot, he became very angry. Even Bonnie’s offer to let him join didn’t help. He stormed out of the room and when Tina pulled on her mini-dress and he caused quite a scene right in the middle of the party. When Bonnie made it to the big room where the party was going on, Tina and her boyfriend were arguing loudly. They left as she came into the room.


After the kids Christmas break, she was full of hope that she and Tina might become an item. However, when Bonnie next spoke to Tina, after the New Year, she made no reference to what had happened. That sent Bonnie back into her depression.

Two more weeks crept by. It was a drab February 1st at the office and Cooper opened his e-mail’s mechanically, barely focusing on their contents.


“What does he want?” he said crossly as he opened one from Martin LeMarco, the company’s owner. He began to scan the contents not intending to really read it carefully, when he realized this was not just another “action memo”. He read it a second time, intently.


Cooper,

I was making up the invitation list to join me and my family for our annualwinter Caribbean cruise on the San Dinero. You and your lovely wife’s name have come to my attention as people who would be a good fit for this event.

Your secretary Tina has come with us the last 4 years and she seems to think you two would both enjoy the cruise and add be just the right couple to round out our crew.

I’m looking forward to spending the third week of February with you two.

Sincerely,

Martin LeMarco

P.S. It looks like you have saved the Chicago project. Great work.


What did he mean “Tina thinks we would be a good fit" Cooper mused. And what is this putting the project on as a post-script? What could be more important than saving the company? And what did Tina tell Mr. LeMarco? Cooper picked up the phone and dialed Bonnie.


“Have you and Tina talked about anything recently?”


“We haven’t’ talked for more than a minute at a time in three weeks. Why?”

Cooper read the letter and added, “These cruises on his yacht are always wrapped in secrecy. Normally only Mr. LeMarco’s family and a few others, mostly very attractive women in the office, are invited. The natural assumption is these trips are pretty wild.”


“Wow.” Bonnie said struck dumb by both the fact Cooper had never told her about this before and by the fact that Cooper was suggesting that Mr. LeMarco hosted a floating sex party. “And you think Tina knows everything?”


“Yea, if there is something to know, she’ll know it” he said. “But I can’t just ask her. I was thinking perhaps if you asked her what she knows we might find out something.”


“Well?”, Bonnie said dejectedly, “I’m not so sure that will help.”


Cooper paused “You know we can’t exactly say no, no matter what the truth is.”


“Why would we want to say no?” Bonnie answered incredulously.


“I don’t know. What if maybe he’s inviting us because he wants to screw you.”

“He’s handsome and very charming” she said with a wicked grin. The conversation was already lifting her mood. “I wouldn’t mind. It’s not like I have been over sexed of late. Would you mind?”


“He’s my boss!”


“You are Tina’s boss and you didn’t mind us doing each other.”


“But that is different…..I guess. OK, I just need you to find out.”


“Tell Mr. LeMarco we will come, right now. And I’ll find out what I can from Tina.”


A few minutes later she had Tina on the phone. Right off Tina said “I was expecting you to call.”

That was not what Bonnie thought she’d hear.


Tina went on “Mr. LeMarco gave me the heads up this morning that he was sending you and Cooper an invite for this year’s winter cruise.”


In an almost accusatory voice Bonnie asked “Why did he do that?”


“Because I was the one who recommended you two, or rather I helped confirm Mr. LeMarco’s thought to invite you. It is a great honor for you to be invited. I hope you are going to accept.”


“Oh yes, Cooper is telling him right now that we would be honored to come. It’s not like we could decline. Not to be ungrateful, but how does a secretary get to make that kind of recommendation and the Senior Vice-President isn’t even consulted?”


Tina didn’t answer immediately, then began talking in a hushed tone. “Remember when I told you why I knew about Miami Beach? I know you understood what I was saying about my relationship with LeMarco's. That was a huge breach of his trust to have told you and I went back and apologized to him that very day. But since you already know, I’ll say that there are many sides to Mr. LeMarco. When he is here at the office, it is all professional. He does have personal relationships, but those personal relationships don’t bleed over to office operations. That is in stark contrast to his son who is open about chasing every skirt he sees.” She laughed as is everyone knew that. Bonnie did not.


Tina went on. “So, I have a rather remote professional relationship with Mr. LeMarco while at the same time, on a different plane I have a very personal private relationship with Martin. The spring cruise is a personal trip for is family, a very personal trip. Only his family and his trusted friends are invited. Thus, in this case my intimate personal relationship trumps the Senior Vice-President. Let me say again, it was my personal relationship with you, not my professional relationship with Cooper, which caused Mr. LeMarco to ask me if you two would be a good fit for this trip.”

“Why did he do that? Sure Cooper has been with the company a long time, but Mr. LeMarco has never tried to initiate any sort of personal relationship with us before. Why now?”

Tina sighed. “Bonnie, you really are sweet, but awfully naive. Last summer, when you stayed at Mr. LeMarco’s condo in Miami, did it never occur to you that Martin might know the man who owns the penthouse?”


Bonnie’s breath caught. NO, she had never, ever even considered such a thing. She was sure her voice betrayed her shock.


Tina nodded. “Not only does he know the man who screwed you while you looked down at your family from the balcony, the two men have been close friends for decades.”


Bonnie gaped as she saw the obvious implication Tina was making.

“Yes,” she went on. “Martin knew Cooper’s wife had screwed his friend even before you guys made it back home. For a long time he just assumed you were cheating on Cooper given the reputation he has for being strait laced. Not that he would have condemned you for it, but he didn’t share his knowledge with anyone but Judy. It wasn’t until the Christmas Party, after my boyfriend announced that he’d caught you and I having sex, that he realized you were not doing things behind your husband’s back. I don’t know if Cooper told you what he did when everyone looked at him to see what he would do hearing you were having sex with me. He just laughed and let everyone know how he loved you because you weren’t afraid to live without fear of seizing the day. Nobody missed the significance that he made a point to get up and kiss you when you rejoined the party. Not that I saw that part since I was already out the door by then, but everyone was talking about it for weeks. Not that we had sex, but how cool Cooper was with it.”


“Yes, he told me” was Bonnie’s response. Cooper’s version was slightly different than Tina’s, but she knew he’d treated it as if it was no surprise to him. He’d seen her and Tina flirting earlier and then disappear. He had just assumed they were having sex. The only surprise that night was when Bonnie’s fling suddenly became public knowledge. His gambit to make light of the whole thing had paid off and he found his social status at the office improved rather than diminished by that event.


Tina nodded and concluded “Your invitation to the cruise was more or less assured at the moment he gave you that kiss. All I did was confirm what Mr. LeMarco already knew or at least suspected. I let him know clearly that Cooper knew and was supportive of your freedom to have sex with whoever you choose. Like I said, I was not telling him anything he had not concluded, but I’ll admit I was happy for the chance to make up to you for the terrible embarrassment my ex caused you at the Christmas party.”


It was a lot for Bonnie to take in. She did want to correct one thing though, “Tina, I was fine about what happened at the Christmas party. I felt bad for you, but you have nothing to apologize for. I’ve always enjoyed our time together and very much enjoyed our time at the party. If he hadn't been so mad at you I would have said getting caught was part of the fun. I did offer to let him join us if you recall. I wanted to tell you that when I called right after we got back from Colorado, but it seemed you didn’t want to talk about it.”


Tina’s voice seemed taken aback “Oh, wow. I just thought. Oh, I so misunderstood.”


“That’s OK” Bonnie said, “I guess it is good that I called.” Then she went back to the primary subject. “So, let me get this right. You are not allowed to tell anyone who has not been on one of those trips what goes on. Right?”

“Yes.”

“So do this, just tell me if I have it wrong. From what I gather, Mr. LeMarco has invited us because he knows that Cooper is OK with me having sex with other people. So I'm assuming that this trip will involve people getting naked and having sex with people to whom they are not married…and…if we go, I likely will have sex with Mr. LeMarco and other guests. Am I wrong about any of that?”


Tina took her time in answering. “Please remember, you came to those conclusions on your own and I didn’t say any of that. You are right in guessing I am not allowed to say anything about what happens on those cruises. But, if you are right, you can be sure it was more than my confirmation alone that got you invited. Mr. LeMarco likes you and thinks you are very attractive; and, IF you are right about the nature of the cruise, I can assure you with confidence that Mr. LeMarco would never push himself on anyone. So let me ask you, IF your assessment is correct, was I right to recommend that you two get an invitation?”