When I get home the light in the kitchen is on. It’s Tuesday so the scent of Chinese spice is strong in the hall. I expect Alan to be by the sink, cursing out our son because he can’t find the steel soap stone to shift the whiff of garlic from his hands. Thomas is always misplacing that bloody thing. But the kitchen is empty. Where have they gotten to?
I give the chicken that’s marinating in a glass bowl a quick shake. Smile at a note from Thomas telling me he’s staying with Julie tonight, so that’s his whereabouts solved. Then I open the kitchen window so that the cat can get in for her six o’clock feed.
That’s when I hear the drain gurgling outside. Ah, that’s where Alan is! I’m home an hour early, which means he’d have got back from his run about three-quarters of an hour ago. I should have guessed he’d be taking a shower.
As I head up the stairs my content smile gets wider and wider. Alan is singing. He always sings in the shower. Wrong lyrics and out of key, but with all the gusto of a well-paid lounge singer. It’s adorable.
I change quickly, laughing when he garbles out the high notes, imagining him with his hand on his chest and the other one sweeping out in front of him as he tries to get his voice to carry to the back of his imaginary theatre. I’ll surprise him by preparing the rest of the dinner and having a nice glass of wine waiting for him when he gets out.
I’m two stairs down when I realise he’s gone quiet. I wait, hand getting tighter and tighter on the banister with every silent moment that passes. That run could have been too much for him. His doctor told him he needed to take it a bit easier after those pains in his chest last week.
I’m not breathing when I turn around and pad toward the bathroom. My ears are working overtime, eager to hear some bawdy song or another blast from Alan’s lungs. But even when I reach the open door and feel the first brush of steam kiss my cheeks, he’s still quiet.
Sending a little prayer out into the universe, I peek around the door but keep my eyes closed. Please God, let him be on his feet and happy when I look. Slowly, I open my eyes.
Through the glass shower screen, I see why Alan has stopped singing. The smile that breaks out on my face isn’t the content one I had when I first got home. It isn’t the amused one I wore while this crazy man serenaded himself. It’s a dirty smile. An ‘I have a secret and you don’t know what it is’ smile. It’s the smile of a woman who has caught her husband masturbating without him realising she’s there.
I stay behind the door, using the dressing gown on the back of it as cover. Even if Alan opens his eyes he won’t notice me. I doubt he will, though. He has a look about him that tells me he’s completely absorbed in himself. In whatever is running through his mind as he lathers up his furry chest with one hand and his hairy balls with the other.
From my sneaky spot, I can see everything he’s doing. Cupping his balls as the ghost of a smile flits across his lips. Stretching out his cock and biting his lip when he pulls back and his head emerges from beneath his foreskin. He keeps pulling until I can almost see his frenulum straining under the pressure.
God, what a sight he is. Age has changed him more than he wants to admit. The hair on his head is thinner while the hair on his body has turned thick and wiry. From top to toe, his once black fur is now dark grey with sprinklings of icy white. Dirty snow, he calls it. His body is thicker, his muscles softer, and his jaw is less defined than it once was. Sometimes getting old upsets him, but I just tell him he’s like a fine wine to me. He never believes me.
It’s a shame he can’t see what I’m seeing right now. The concentration on his face, his bicep flexing, the tendons in his forearm and in the back of his hand taut and shifting as his arm moves. I see him shuffle forward a little, stick his tongue out to catch a few drops of the water that’s beating down on his skin.
White suds run down his tight thighs, washed away by the jets from the shower. Warm fluid starts to run down my thighs, forced from deep inside of me every time my cunt clenches with desire. I wonder briefly what he’d do if I gave the game away. If I let him know he’s not alone. Would he return my dirty smile and invite me to join him? Or would he blush and abandon his wank?
I’m sorely tempted to find out, but I won’t. If I let him know I’m there this will all change. He will change because he’ll feel the need to do this for my eyes rather than his body. He’ll turn to the side so I can watch in profile. His right side, of course. That, in his opinion, is his best side. He’ll stop licking his lips so that he can purse them to remind me how they feel against mine. He’ll waggle his tongue and ask me if I want it on my cunt. And he’ll open his eyes and expect me to put on a performance for him. It’s only fair, he’d say.
No, I’m not letting him know I’m here.
Oh fuck, look at him! His knees are bent. He’s pulled his chest in and pushed his groin out, arching his back just a little. My fingers are on my nipple. I watch him rock his hips, his cock slipping in and out of a loose fist one moment, being strangled in a vice-like grip the next. One hand slaps against the glass door. My cunt throbs. His fingers slowly stiffen, each knuckle bending until it looks like he’s clawing at the screen.
Instead of pumping his forearm he starts to shuffle his wrist, the ring of his thumb and forefinger banging against the deep ridge of his head. I’m breathing so hard. He’s breathing harder. His jaw suddenly swings, he bangs the screen door and thick blobs of spunk splatter the glass, running down it in creamy white streaks.
Alan rests his arm against the screen. Presses his face into the crook of his elbow.
I stay until his chest stops heaving and his head begins to lift, then I take a few steps back. He’ll never know I watched him because I won’t tell him. I know if I do he’ll grin and, as he usually does, he’ll tell me I can have him for dessert instead of the lychees and vanilla ice cream he has planned.
But telling him will have him on alert during future showers and I don’t want that. If he doesn’t know I’m there I get to really see him. What he likes, what he wants, what he needs. I get glimpses of the young man I married in the intensity of his strokes, the absolute self-absorption in his expression. I want that for him. I want it for me. I’m not altogether selfish, though. He’ll reap the benefits later, because every time I take a step down the stairs my labia rub against my clit and it’s driving me insane. I’ll be the one offering an alternative dessert after dinner tonight and before I even get a taste I know it’s going to be delicious.